Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 10 years ago

2012: Earth Will Spin Opposite Direction?

Well the latest thing I've heard about is that in 2012 when the Sun is at solar maximum we will be hit by a supermassive solar flare of charged particles, it will strike our ever weakening magnetic field and cause the inner core of the Earth to flip. If you place two magnets together of same polarity and let go of one it will flip in an attempt to get the opposite polaritys to match since opposites attract.

Since the core spins anti-clockwise now (north viewing), should it flip it would end up spinning clockwise instead whilst the mantle and crust would continue spinning anti-clockwise due to momentum.

That would be short lived however as the mantle and crust would attempt to change direction and spin clockwise like the inner core meaning the change in speed would create supermassive tidal waves, tectonic plate displacement, volcanic eruptions and pretty much total surface destruction.

Now it all sounds 'possible' and the science behind it possibly occurring is actually quite rock solid even though scientists deny the Sun could create a flare big enough to do it. But should a flare big enough hit us it's possible it could happen.

But the question I ask is: Is there any evidence that the Earth has spun in different directions in the past?

Does anyone here know of any such evidence being found? be it geological or biblical references or mythological references. For example is it mentioned anywhere that the Sun once rose in the west and set in the east?



Whether I believe 2012 or not is irrelevant. Is there evidence the Earth has spun in opposite directions?

Update 2:

I know the magnetic field has swicthed many times in the past but I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about a physical flip of the actual inner core of the Earth causing the Earth to spin in the opposite direction.

Is there any evidence or mention in ancient documentation the Earth has spun differently.

Update 3:

Dear bikenbeer2000,

The inner core would not stop spinning, it would flip and continue spinning at the same speed it was spinning at before, the only thing that will have occurred is a flip.

The inner core would have enough power to stop the mantle/crust and spin it the opposite direction. It's liquid metal between the inner core and mantle/crust. The liquid would change direction and gradually cause the Earth mantle/crust to change direction.

Your understanding of what would take place is none existent. You've clearly never studied physics.

15 Answers

  • 10 years ago
    Best answer

    lets be honest here, no one really knows the truth, yes we can all speculate but in reality anything is possible.

    the energy of the sun alone causes mayhem so why not the energy from the centre of our galaxy.

    solar flares happen every 11 years from our nearest star.

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    No evidence of any kind that the Earth has spun in the opposite direction from its current spin.

    However, many studies have been done on the forces and momentum of the collision of a planetesimal (Theia) with the forming Earth 4 billion years ago that created the moon.

    Those studies suggest that the observed results would best be achieved if the Earth actually rotated in the opposite direction at the time of the collision.

    It was the force of the collision that changed the Earth's rotation (if the computer simulations are correct).

    Maybe I don't understand your question - it sounds like you believe the rotation of the Earth is controlled somehow by the spinning of the inner core. That isn't the case - the inner core does not control the Earth's rotation.

    Re: your comments on "the inner core would not stop spinning, it would flip" is not possible - the laws of kinetics and physics wouldn't allow a "flip" of the inner core. If the core flipped, the torque and tensions would tear the Earth apart.

  • Anonymous
    10 years ago

    No, there is no such evidence. But there is evidence that the orientation of Earths axis possibly changed by 52° 450 million years ago. But this took each degree of change about one million years, it was a geologically slow process. And it does also not happen simply because it can, it requires a special mechanic situation for earths mass distribution to happen - in this case it was the formation of the last supercontinent, that maybe caused it.

    Biblical and mythological references are completely useless, since it is often impossible to say what is really meant by the author after some hundred years.

    The latest thing I have heard is that all dooms day stuff about 2012 is pure nonsense. Really.

    Some facts: We will be at solar maximum in 2013. Solar flares strike us often, regardless of maximum or minimum. The strongest solar storm in history happened during a solar minimum. No solar storm caused such a thing. And it actually can't. The energy unleashed during a solar storm is still almost nothing compared to the energy stored in the motion of the core of Earth.

    "It is possible it could happen": No, it is not.

    The energy stored inside Earths rotation is as large as the complete energy production of the sun (in all 4pi directions) during one week.

    And a solar storm does also not affect Earths magnetic field that much - you need LONG antennas for measuring the change. So long that accidentally only power lines and pipelines are affected. You wouldn't even see a compass wobble slightly during a solar storm - and especially not the core of Earth.

    "That would be short lived however as the mantle and crust would attempt to change direction and spin clockwise like the inner core meaning the change in speed would create supermassive tidal waves, tectonic plate displacement, volcanic eruptions and pretty much total surface destruction."

    That is sounding like you watched a special fictional movie lately, did you? Because it is the same kind of nonsense as you have in it. It has at least nothing to do with science. Contrary to what you claim.

  • 10 years ago

    First: If you look at the Mid-Atlantic Rift, you will see strips that are parallel to the rift itself going in opposite directions. Think of it as two hands that are folded together, like you are holding hands with yourself. If you leave your fingers in the same place, but move the hands apart, you have two identical looking hands, but they are split by a new space in the middle. The rift is the same, it splits, causing two identical strips of rock. Those thousand mile strips have a magnetic definition due to the time they were made, and where the magnetic poles were at. If it were present, you can see the North-South rocks lining up with the current poles, but if you look at a rock a few hundred thousand years later, it is the opposite, meaning that the pole shift has happened hundreds of times. Second: The core is spinning opposite as the crust already, meaning that a shift would not make the planet stop and go the other way. Days would still be days, as years to years. The only thing different is that our magnetic field would be really weak and that our poles would be flopped. Third: Going back to the Mid-Atlantic Rift... the current strip of rock that is being made is already quite thick. Actually, it is thicker than most of the other strips of rock on the rift. This means that we are due for yet another pole shift, and that means very soon (within the next 100,000 years).

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  • 10 years ago


    What the BLEEPING hell are you talking about?

    Do a simple experiment. Take a few different sized gyroscopes and spin them all as fast as you can. Now, take the small one and FLIP it over. Feel the resistance? Bet you can. Now, try a bigger gyroscope, flip it as fast as you can. More resistance? Why do you think that is? Now do the biggest one. Even MORE resistance?

    Here's the thing... the faster and more massive a spinning object is, the HARDER it will be for you to flip it. It really wouldn't take THAT much of a gyroscope, to be fast enough or massive enough for you to be unable to move it at all.

    The Earth is a FREAKING HUGE MASSIVE ball. Spinning pretty fast. Imagine the force required to "FLIP" it. You would tear the crust off... rip off the atmosphere... and leave really big fingermarks.

    Patrick Geryl is a LOON. He is such a tyro with physics that he ignores 90% of the problem and the 10% he addresses, he gets WRONG. First, and foremost... THERE IS NO FREAKING WAY to predict a solar flare (or CME) with ANY degree of certainty even a WEEK in advance, and this @#$ LOON has been predicting one for 2012 for YEARS. The chances of Geryl being right about 2012, is roughly the same of my cat winning a Pulitzer... and I don't let her near my puter.

    As a matter of form, you should never criticize someone's understanding of a subject in which your own is lacking.

  • 10 years ago

    The Earth has always spun in the same direction and always will.

    The amount of energy needed to flip it over is the same as would be required to stop it and spin it up at the same speed in the opposite direction. Do you know how much rotational energy the Earth possesses? It's 55,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Joules. Tidal friction has slowed it by one thousandth of a second per day in the last 200 years. How likely does it sound that it will not only stop but reverse direction? And all on a single day in 3 years time?

    You sound like a disciple of Patrick Geryl, the well-known Belgian fruitcake.


    You're the one with a basic misunderstanding of physics. You can take a spinning object and turn it upside down. Or you can stop it and spin in up in the opposite direction. The final result is the same, therefore the energy required to go from the initial state to the final state is the same. This is the basic law of gyroscopes.

    You talk about a 'flip' of the core as though it can happen at the drop of a hat. It can't. It takes a huge amount of energy, as I've said.

    Do please stop and think about how silly this all sounds and how you're showing yourself up.

  • kuka
    Lv 4
    3 years ago

    Wow, there are various questions you're asking there... I had a physics professor which provided a theory, and this became into 5 years in the past until eventually now the 2012 drama fairly began... He believed that the extinctions, to illustrate the dinosaurs, have been led to by a violent shift in the Earth's magnetic field. you may think of that does no longer consequence the suggestions, yet evaluate the undeniable fact that this is how birds commute, by following magnetics. He felt that this transformation might impact our brains with some thing alongside the lines of "wiping our perplexing drives sparkling." some thing to contemplate....

  • Steven
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    There is evidence in the rocks of the Mid-Atlantic Rift that the Earth's magnetic field has flipped north-south many times in geologic history.

    There is no evidence that the rotation of the Earth has reversed.

    Therefore, I'd have to say that _if_ the basic scenario occurred (massive solar flare affecting magnetosphere and flipping core polarity), then the Earth would _not_ suddenly start rotating in the other direction.

  • 10 years ago

    "Now it all sounds 'possible'"

    Glad you put the word 'possible' in quotes. It sounds plausible if you don't apply too much critical thinking to it. The type of stuff that has just enough plausibility to make it into a woo-woo website or e-mail.

    "and the science behind it possibly occurring is actually quite rock solid"

    Afraid that's not true. Neither the part where a solar flare affects the rotation of the core, nor the part where a change in rotation of the core somehow causes a change in rotation of the earth as a whole, is "rock solid". In fact, neither one is even "consistent with the laws of physics".

  • 10 years ago

    Pole Shifts have happened more than 180 times before, as detected in the paleomagnetic record of rocks on the ocean floor and in some lava flows. These magnetic reversals take place every 100,000 to 25 million years, according to Scientific American, and may take as long as 5,000 years to do so.

    We'll most likely experience aurorae at all latitudes whilst the dipolar magnetic field settles down to its new, reversed state, and there might be a small increase in energetic particles from space

    we'll still be protected by our thick atmosphere.

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