What would cause the needle of a compass to point toward the east?

Expert Answers info

Greg Jackson, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

bookM.A. from University of Massachusetts-Boston


calendarEducator since 2018

write1,393 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Law and Politics

A properly functioning compass will always point towards magnetic north. This is because the magnetic pin in the compass will align itself to the top of the planet's magnetic field and point itself in that particular direction. If a compass is pointing east, this could indicate that something is wrong with it.

Perhaps the most likely reason a compass would point East is that there is a strong magnetic field close by in that direction. If something is producing a stronger magnetic attraction than the planet's own...

(The entire section contains 280 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Ask a Question