Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 1 month ago

# Has Earth ever flipped upside-down back in history?

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• D g
Lv 7
1 month ago

That was the last time we got rid of flat earthers they fell off after the earth flipped

• 1 month ago

You are talking about a "true polar wander"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/True_polar_wander

Yes, the Earth's rotation axis has "flipped" way back in the past (more than once). However, when it does, it is not all the way "upside-down".

Imagine an American football.  It has more than one natural rotation axis.  After a touchdown, you sometimes see players rotate the ball rapidly on its long axis (longitudinal), making the ball look like it is standing up.

As the speed of rotation slows down, it eventuall falls onto its "side" and continues to rotate around a transversal axis of rotation (90 degrees from the the longitudinal axis).  The transition takes a few seconds.

In the case of Earth, the "flip" would take hundreds of millions of years.  I remember reading a paper where it was shown that we are OK for the next two billion years. This is because of the presence of our large Moon which stabilizes the Earth's axis of rotation (because of its effect on our equatorial bulge).  As the Moon slowly moves away (4 cm per year), this stabilizing effect will become too weak.

• 1 month ago

Well... the magnetic field is thought to have reversed itself numerous times, but - physically - there's no evidence of such a 'flip.'

• 1 month ago

We aren't all that sure what-all happened to the earth's motion when it got smacked by the moon-forming planetoid, but nothing more recent has happened which could cause the earth to flip in any way at all.  the earth is right effing big and has one heck of a lot of momentum. Inertia requires something extremely significant to cause anything but a tiny change.

• 1 month ago

It probably wouldn't be detectable if it had, and it would've had to have done so very slowly in any case.  What does happen is that the north and south magnetic poles reverse, although the process takes thousands of years and doesn't seem to follow any pattern.

• 1 month ago

It has in the distant past

Our Moon has always acted as a Counterbalance

• Robert
Lv 6
1 month ago

Yes it did.   That's when the dinosaurs fell off.

• 1 month ago

If it were so then its rotation around its axis must also flip too , to remain the same East and West, as present.

• Anonymous
1 month ago

Yes it did, and it is still upside down