Magnetometer


Significance

The Earth generates a magnetic field that creates measurable magnetic disturbances in the atmosphere. A magnetometer is a scientific instrument that measures this phenomenon in terms of magnetic flux density. The scientific unit for reading magnetic flux density is the Tesla or As/m2. Substances and materials that disturbs this flux are called magnetic. When magnetic materials are present, a magnetometer detects the amount of distortion these materials cause in the Earth's field. A magnetometer not only tells us how particular magnetic materials affect magnetic flux, but can also measure the strength of magnetic fields. This information can be used to discern the direction, rotation, and angle of magnetic fields, as well as the location of specific objects within it.

Applications

Magnetometers can be useful instruments in many professional applications. Light weight and portable, magnetometers are easily transported to just about any testing site. In archaeology, magnetometers can be used to find buried graves containing metallic artifacts. In military applications, magnetometers are used to locate tanks, mines, and fuel drums. The mining industry and numerous other scientific fields also measure magnetic anomalies with magnetometers.

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