Life on Super Earth will last longer due to better protection from cosmic radiation

Источник изображения: urikyo33 /

According to a new scientific study, life on Super Earth – planets larger than ours – may take longer to develop due to the more stable magnetic fields that protect the surface of such planets from harmful cosmic radiation.

Image source: urikyo33 /

The planets are constantly bombarded by charged particles flying at the speed of light – these particles are ejected by stars and other high-energy objects. For planets, intense radiation exposure can have devastating consequences: over time they can lose their atmosphere, and the oceans of water can dry up and threaten the survival of life. A magnetic field protects the Earth from cosmic rays. A team of scientists led by staff at the Livermore National Laboratory. Lawrence (USA) believes that super-Earths also have their own magnetic fields – planets larger in mass than Earth, but smaller than Neptune. Scientists say life on the surface of such planets has more opportunities for origin and evolution.

The Earth’s magnetic field is formed by the fact that the liquid part of the planet’s iron alloy core revolves around the solid part: the movement of electrons in the fluid creates electric currents, which create a magnetic field. However, at a depth of 2890 km below the planet’s surface, the temperature of the molten iron gradually decreases. After about 6.2 billion years, the liquid portion of the core will cool, eventually solidifying, and the Earth’s magnetic field will disappear.

In the case of Super Earths, scientists suggest a slightly different picture. Due to the high pressure, the melting temperature of the core of such planets varies, and at higher masses, the cooling process decreases significantly. The authors of the study conducted an experiment studying the melting of iron at a pressure of 1000 GPa, which is three times the pressure at the core of the earth. This required a laser and a milligram of iron. Based on the results of the experiment, it was concluded that the formation of the core in Super Earth would take 30% longer compared to the Earth’s conditions. The authors of the study are confident that astronomers will use the results of their work to create a more complete picture of what is happening on the surface and in the depths of exoplanets.

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