News of the WeekGeophysics

Atmosphere Drives Earth's Tipsiness

Science  04 Aug 2000:
Vol. 289, Issue 5480, pp. 710
DOI: 10.1126/science.289.5480.710

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For more than a century, geophysicists who track Earth's rotation have sensed a rhythmic unsteadiness about the planet, an ever-so-slight wobbling whose source remained frustratingly mysterious. But researchers have been homing in on the roots of the so-called Chandler wobble, and now a report in the 1 August issue of Geophysical Research Letters fingers the shifting pressures of the deep sea and ultimately the fickle winds of the atmosphere.