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the Earth under attack

 

Ros

Hi, my name's Ros and I'm going to tell you just how nasty the Sun can be. Other solar explorers will tell you it's fascinating, they'll tell you it's amazing, they'll tell you it's incredible. One thing they won't tell you is that the Sun is doing its best to attack us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. What's more it's been doing it for around 4,600,000,000 years.

 
Tornado Factfile   Solar Wind Factfile  

If super-fast winds are blowing our way from the Sun, what protects us?

 

Fortunately for us, there is something special about the solar wind and the Earth. They both have magnetic fields, and the way the two magnetic fields interact is what protects us.

 
     

The Earth’s magnetic field is really kind of useful, as we wouldn’t survive very long on Earth if all those solar particles kept raining down on us.  When astronauts travel outside the Earth’s magnetic field they need to wear special protection to keep them safe from the solar wind.  mouse over arrow

 

Protection from the solar wind will be a problem for people travelling to Mars. That will be a journey of about nine months, all the time without a magnetic shield.

RM Geospace
   

 

   
 
 

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