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This year the Earth is being subjected to a high amount of solar activity due to the sunspot cycle being close to its maximum. This has an effect on the Earth's magnetic field. While small, the magnetic flux was able to be detected using a magnetometer built from a pair of magnets and a mirror suspended from a nylon thread. A change in the magnetic field of the Earth causes a slight rotation of the magnet which can be detected using laser light reflected off the mirror into a detector.
Primary Advisor's Department
Stander Symposium poster
McQuillen, Andrew T., "Detecting Changes in the Earth's Magnetic Field" (2013). Stander Symposium Posters. 308.