Collaborative measurement of the geomagnetic field
This is a collaborative project which aims at obtaining the map of the Earth’s magnetic field.
It started in Taipei, China, where they have already been measuring since July 2022. In Argentina and, hopefully, other South American countries, the measurements will begin in March-April 2023.
The proposal consists of inviting high school students and professors to use the program developed for mobile phones, PhyPhox, to measure the different components of the magnetic field at a fixed time over a few months during the school year. The participants are also invited to take photos of the activity.
All collected data and images will be uploaded in a form. The data will be shared among all the coordinators and the Chapter of Students in Magnetism of the IEEE Magnetic Society will add those data to the map they have been producing which is available at their website.
The International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG) proposed to present the results as a poster at its international conference that will take place in July 2023.
In Argentina, we have advanced coordinating the activity with schools of the city and of the province of Buenos Aires. Schools of Uruguay will also participate. Other countries will be invited too.
Through their participation, students will obtain basic ideas of magnetism, magnetic fields and units of magnetic force. If it is possible to repeat the measurement throughout the school year, they will also be able to detect if there are variations.
By collaborating with students from other regions of the world, it will be possible to better understand the three-dimensional structure of the field, discuss how auroras occur, and report on observed changes over time in the Earth’s magnetic field.
This is an ideal project to illustrate how understanding basic science can yield to discoveries of great technological impact. It is an outreach activity that will help improve the teaching of science at schools. All of these are aspects that are very relevant to basic sciences and sustainable development.