Monday, 29 August 2011

Pole Position

They made it! The intrepid 5-man "Old Pulteney Row To The Pole" team managed to drag their boat "Old Pulteney" the final few miles over the ice to the.... To the what? To the North Pole, stupid! Or is where they ended up the north Pole? Since that spot is on an island, and since the North Pole is not, then what was their objective? Aaaah - it was to the magnetic north pole - that's all right then. But wait, on their website, they say
The Magnetic North Pole is continually moving. It was originally reached by James Clark Ross in 1831. At the time it was located on the Boothia Peninsula, Canada.
More recently the Canadian government made attempts to measure it and show its movement northwestward.
This was eventually successfully achieved in 1996 when an expedition certified its location by magnetometer and theodolite. This was the first time it has been accurately measured. The expedition was led by David Hempelman-Adams and included Jock Wishart.
The measurements were accepted by the Canadian government and it became a recognised and certified position at;
The position is 78°35.7N 104°11.9W / 78.595°N 104.1983°W.
So it was at that position in 1996, and as they say, "The Magnetic North Pole is continually moving". so where is it now?
The speed of movement of the Pole began to increase significantly in a northwesterly direction about 1998, and now averages about 37 miles each year and so It is currently projected to be in a position in Siberia by the end of the century. 
Let's get this straight, they weren't rowing to the North Pole, as many newspapers and TV news reports stated. They weren't even rowing to the Magnetic North Pole, they were rowing to where the Magnetic North Pole was in 1996! So where is it now? Google maps knows:

Using the scale at bottom left, and using Mark One eyeball, that position would seem to be about 500km NW of their finishing point, marked by the red arrow. That red arrow is pointing at a spot only 78°N - some 12° south of the North Pole, and a long way away. What does this expedition prove? That the Arctic ice is in a bad way, and will be gone soon, and this proved by an exhausting row to nowhere-in-particular, with days spent marooned on land because of that "vanished" ice, and a final 3-day drag-your-boat over the "vanished ice". Or something

1 comment:

  1. About 80% of all the water in every sea /ocean is below 5 degree centigrade. water below that temperature shrinks when warmed - expands when cooled more. Fill up a bottle of seawater at 4degrees; then put it in the freezer = after cooling by couple degrees - will explode. Laws of physics control climate / regulate atmospheric temperature, expanding /shrinking of the seawater, not the climatologists. Unless they abolish the laws of physics by act of parliament and by UN... have some real proofs: