- Alternation of the Earth's magnetic polarity.The Earth's internal magnetic field reverses, on average, about every 300,000 to 1 million years. This reversal is very sudden on a geologic time scale, apparently taking about 5,000 years. The time between reversals is highly variable, sometimes less than 40,000 years and at other times as long as 35 million years. No regularities or periodicities have yet been discovered. A long interval of one polarity may be followed by a short interval of opposite polarity. See also polar wandering.
* * *an alternation of the Earth's magnetic polarity in geologic time. See polar wandering.
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