From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: Magneto-reception in Human beings
Mains level: Not Much
- Now a team of researchers has shown that humans do indeed unconsciously respond to the changes in the earth’s magnetic fields.
- Scientists have long known that turtles, birds, honeybees and even bacteria can sense the earth’s magnetic field and use them for navigation.
Magneto-reception in Human Beings
- Magneto-reception has hardly been tested in humans and many studies have been inconclusive.
- The researchers wrapped with electrical coils, which helped simulate the earth’s natural magnetic field.
- The participants were connected to an EEG set-up and their brain activity was monitored.
- In the one-hour session, for a few minutes, the magnetic field around the chamber was shifted. They noticed that during this period, the alpha power of the brain began to drop.
- When a human brain is unengaged, the alpha power is high.
- When something catches its attention, consciously or unconsciously, its alpha power drops.