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Compute Values of Earth's Magnetic Field
The program run from this form computes the values of the Earth's magnetic field parameters for a given location and date or date range. Input required is the date and location (in latitude and longitude) of interest. Links to the U.S. Census Bureau's U.S. Gazeteer and the Getty Thesaurus assists in determing the latitude and longitude for locations of interest. The magnetic parameters (D, I, H, X, Y, Z, and F) are computed based on the latest International Geomagnetic Reference Field (IGRF), a Schmidt quasinormalized spherical harmonic model of the magnetic field. Accuracies for the angular components (Declination, D and Inclination, I) are reported in degrees and minutes of arc and are generally within 30 minutes. Accuracies for the force components (Horizontal - H, North - X, East - Y, Vertical - Z, and Total force - F) are generally within 25 nanotesla. A link to frequently-asked questions about the geomagnetic field of Earth is provided as background material.
Intended for grade levels:
  • High (9-12)
  • College (13-14)
  • College (15-16)
  • Graduate / Professional
Type of resource:
  • Tools:
    • Calculation / Conversion
  • Geological Sciences:
    • Geophysics
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Copyright and Other Restrictions Information is Unknown
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-000-026
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Contact: Susan J. McLean
National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)