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Volcanic Activity Causes Magnetic Interference

By Val Ellis last modified May 13, 2009 01:54 AM

Published: 2009-05-13 01:54:23
Topics: Pacific Crossing
Countries: Australia , Vanuatu

When we left Port Vila in Vanuatu for Townsville, Australia in late November, we encountered very strong magnetic activity. During the first 60 - 70 miles of our journey, the autopilot refused to cooperate, and we received non stop interference on our fluxgate compass. This, we have later learned, was due to periodical magnetic activity caused by volcanic activity. Other cruisers should know, because it was so serious, it almost made us turn around and go back to Port Vila, as a journey without our autopilot with only two people on board doing a 1200 mile leg, would be very tiresome.

Rune Ellingsen
SY Underveis