New map shows variations in Earth's gravity field

Help

Scientists have released what they say is one of the most precise maps of the Earth's gravity ever produced.

Known as a geoid, it essentially defines where the level surface is on our planet - it tells us which way is "up" and which way is "down".

It is drawn from delicate measurements made by Europe's Goce satellite, which flies so low it comes perilously close to falling out of the sky.

This animation shows the minute differences in the pull exerted by the mass of the the planet from one place to the next.

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.