It might look weak, but it is strong enough to protect our lives. We talk about Earth’s magnetic field. With its strength of roughly 30 μT (micro Tesla) that is ten times more than the magnetic field your microwave produces in the distance of about 30cm, but with its huge size, surrounding the Earth and reaching into space, it is strong enough. It deviates energetic particles coming from the Sun and deep universe so they do not easily protrude into our atmosphere. It is the shield that our Earth luckily has, unlike Mars that stands naked in the shower of harmful particles. However, every shield has its limits. If a coronal mass ejection, a chunk of solar plasma, reaches the Earth’s magnetic field, it does interact with it and can cause a geomagnetic storm. .
Learn more about Earth’s magnetic field and its properties in our audio booklet. You will find out more on radiation belts, South Atlantic anomaly and details on a major event that caused fires in telegraph stations – the Carrington event.
Listen to the audio
Audio booklet: Earth’s Magnetic Field
Make tactile images
Tactile image: Earth's magnetic field
Tactile image: Radiation belts
Tactile image: Space weather
Tactile image: Aurora
Tactile image: Aurora formation
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3D model: Earth
3D model: Mars