Earth’s magnetic field a “natural sun screen”

As the field weakens, Earth could be zapped by cancerous radiation, says this article on That same radiation could also lead to evolutionary leaps, as I discuss in Magnetic Reversals and Evolutionary Leaps.

A European Space Agency mission has concluded the Earth’s magnetosphere – which prevents solar winds and radiation from reaching Earth and is our only defense against the radiation blasting out from solar storms – is losing strength.

This natural shield reaches thousands of miles into space and also has an affect on weather patterns and global communication systems.

A spokesman for the agency said: “Measurements made over the past six months confirm the general trend of the field’s weakening, with the most dramatic declines over the Western Hemisphere.

Researchers have warned if it weakens further or were completely eroded away, radiation levels reaching our planet’s surface would double – leading to a huge spike in deaths from skin cancer.

Meanwhile, a group of Danish researchers found the Earth’s weather is being significantly affected by changes to the planet’s magnetic field.

They said changes in cosmic ray levels hitting our atmosphere affected the amount of cloud cover.

Swarm constellation over Earth
Swarm constellation over Earth

Named Swarm, the research project uses three identical satellites to measure magnetic signals from rocks in the Earth’s core, mantle and crust, as well as from the oceans, ionosphere and magnetosphere itself.

Thanks to Mark McHart and Don Brown for this link

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