People can sense Earth’s magnetic field, brain waves suggest

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People can sense Earth’s magnetic field, brain waves suggest Empty People can sense Earth’s magnetic field, brain waves suggest

Post by eddie on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:19 pm

People can sense Earth’s magnetic field, brain waves suggest 7cd9e210



A new analysis of people’s brain waves when surrounded by different magnetic fields suggests that people have a “sixth sense” for magnetism.

Birds, fish and some other creatures can sense Earth’s magnetic field and use it for navigation (SN: 6/14/14, p. 10). Scientists have long wondered whether humans, too, boast this kind of magnetoreception. Now, by exposing people to an Earth-strength magnetic field pointed in different directions in the lab, researchers from the United States and Japan have discovered distinct brain wave patterns that occur in response to rotating the field in a certain way.

These findings, reported in a study published online March 18 in eNeuro, offer evidence that people do subconsciously respond to Earth’s magnetic field — although it’s not yet clear exactly why or how our brains use this information.

“The first impression when I read the [study] was like, ‘Wow, I cannot believe it!’” says Can Xie, a biophysicist at Peking University in Beijing. Previous tests of human magnetoreception have yielded inconclusive results. This new evidence “is one step forward for the magnetoreception field and probably a big step for the human magnetic sense,” he says. “I do hope we can see replications and further investigations in the near future.”

During the experiment, 26 participants each sat with their eyes closed in a dark, quiet chamber lined with electrical coils. These coils manipulated the magnetic field inside the chamber such that it remained the same strength as Earth’s natural field but could be pointed in any direction. Participants wore an EEG cap that recorded the electrical activity of their brains while the surrounding magnetic field rotated in various directions.

This setup simulated the effect of someone turning in different directions in Earth’s natural, unchanging field without requiring a participant to actually move. (Complete stillness prevented motor-control thoughts from tainting brain waves due to the magnetic field.) The researchers compared these EEG readouts with those from control trials where the magnetic field inside the chamber didn’t move.


https://www.sciencenews.org/article/people-can-sense-earth-magnetic-field-brain-waves-suggest


Fascinating stuff!

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Post by Ben Reilly on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:23 pm

Really fascinating. I wonder if that's why sometimes you can get a sense of which way to go even when you're not quite sure where you are?

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Post by eddie on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:26 pm

>THE Ben Reilly< wrote:Really fascinating. I wonder if that's why sometimes you can get a sense of which way to go even when you're not quite sure where you are?

Well it doesn’t seem to work for you when you’re driving. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Ben Reilly on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:27 pm

eddie wrote:
>THE Ben Reilly< wrote:Really fascinating. I wonder if that's why sometimes you can get a sense of which way to go even when you're not quite sure where you are?

Well it doesn’t seem to work for you when you’re driving. Rolling Eyes

So predictable!

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Post by eddie on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:28 pm

>THE Ben Reilly< wrote:
eddie wrote:
>THE Ben Reilly< wrote:Really fascinating. I wonder if that's why sometimes you can get a sense of which way to go even when you're not quite sure where you are?

Well it doesn’t seem to work for you when you’re driving. Rolling Eyes

So predictable!

And you redded me. Don’t care, I look great in red. Cool

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Post by phildidge on Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:38 pm

I love studies like this

So its suggests we have a sense, we are unaware of and unable to basically use.

Laughing

The interesting part was based on how this seems to only work with a downward perception and not up..

I guess humans are not apt at getting it up.


Laughing

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Post by HoratioTarr on Wed Mar 27, 2019 11:00 pm

It works for birds.
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Post by veya_victaous on Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:49 am

phildidge wrote:I love studies like this

So its suggests we have a sense, we are unaware of and unable to basically use.

Laughing

The interesting part was based on how this seems to only work with a downward perception and not up..

I guess humans are not apt at getting it up.


Laughing

this is not uncommon, we have a few redundant features..
Our Eyes and Brains take up a lot of space and our evolutionary ancestors did sacrifice other senses for them .. this is why our sense of smell is so much worse than most mammals and we lack directional hearing a feature most other mammals have.

as it is a sense some other animals including mammals do demonstrably have, it is entirely possible it is just so underdeveloped we can't control it, just like we can't control the direction we hear sound because we can't turn our ears (like most mammals can)

example of it being found in foxes
http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2011/01/11/foxes-use-the-earths-magnetic-field-as-a-targeting-system/#.XJyWu9hS-C8

it is well recorded in reptiles, sharks, and migratory birds

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