Guide to the Auroras (Infographic) Credit: Karl Tate, SPACE.com - The northern lights are more formally known as auroras, and are caused by interactions between the solar wind and the Earth's magnetic field.
'Magnetic' Discovery May Reveal Why Earth Supports Life and Mars Doesn't
Earth's magnetic field, which protects the planet from harmful blasts of solar radiation, is much older than scientists had previously thought. This invisible, protective shield likely existed shortly after the planet formed; a finding that could shed light on why Earth is habitable and Mars is not. Earth's magnetic field helped make life on the planet possible. Without our magnetic field, solar winds would strip away the planet's atmosphere and oceans.
Supercomputer model of Earth's magnetic field. Scientists believe that gyrating iron fluid generates Earth's magnetic field, like a giant dynamo. Both yearly and millennial-scale changes in the field have been attributed to the swirling, spinning outer core. Tracking changes in the magnetic field helps researchers create models of how the dynamo may work.
Simple theory may explain dark matter: Most of the matter in the universe may be made out of particles that possess an unusual, donut-shaped electromagnetic field called an anapole. #physics #cosmology