Fine-tuning?: Earth slows the deadly solar wind to a gentle breeze
|June 1, 2018||Posted by News under Fine tuning, Intelligent Design, Physics|
One reason why life can exist here. From ScienceDaily:
A new study describes the first observations of the process of electron heating in Earth’s bow shock. The researchers found that when the electrons in the solar wind encounter the bow shock, they momentarily accelerate to such a high speed that the electron stream becomes unstable and breaks down. This breakdown process robs the electrons of their high speed and converts the energy to heat.
The results add an important new dimension to scientists’ understanding of Earth’s magnetic field and its ability to protect the planet from harmful particles and radiation. The research paper was published in the journal Physical Review Letters on May 31, 2018.
“If you were to stand on a mountaintop, you might get knocked over by a fast wind,” explained Li-Jen Chen, lead author of the study and an associate research scientist in the UMD Department of Astronomy. “Fortunately, as the solar wind crashes into Earth’s magnetic field, the bow shock protects us by slowing down this wind and changing it to a nice, warm breeze. We now have a better idea how this happens.” Paper. (paywall) – L.-J. Chen, S. Wang, L. B. Wilson, S. Schwartz, N. Bessho, T. Moore, D. Gershman, B. Giles, D. Malaspina, F. D. Wilder, R. E. Ergun, M. Hesse, H. Lai, C. Russell, R. Strangeway, R. B. Torbert, A. F.-Vinas, J. Burch, S. Lee, C. Pollock, J. Dorelli, W. Paterson, N. Ahmadi, K. Goodrich, B. Lavraud, O. Le Contel, Yu. V. Khotyaintsev, P.-A. Lindqvist, S. Boardsen, H. Wei, A. Le, L. Avanov. Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock. Physical Review Letters, 2018; 120 (22) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.225101 More.
Accounting for how life continues to exist is unfairly underrated compared with trying to explain how it got started.
See also: Skeptic: Panspermia (life came from elsewhere than Earth) is “pseudoscience” One gets the impression that the journal Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, which published Steele et al.’s paper, will be reluctant to start a lively discussion about origin of life again. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along.
The unthinkable universe strangely points where materialists dare not boldly go