Earth’s Atmosphere & Magnetic Field


What would it be like if there were no atmosphere and magnetic field on Earth? On Earth’s surface, there would be countless craters from the impact of meteors just like the Moon; and above all, there would be no living organisms on Earth. That is how important Earth’s atmosphere and magnetic field are. Earth’s atmosphere and magnetic field function as protective fields and shields that are essential for the living organisms on it.

Earth’s atmosphere optimized for the survival of living organisms

So far as is known, Earth is the only planet where organisms exist in the Solar System. One of the characteristics of Earth is that it is surrounded by the atmosphere that is perfect for living organisms to survive. This is possible because Earth’s gravity locks the most appropriate amount of gases which are essential for living organisms to live.

Earth’s atmosphere has an appropriate density of nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide; and the atmospheric pressure is about one unit of pressure which is the most appropriate for the survival of living organisms. It also plays the role of insulator and thermostat, so that Earth can keep its average temperature without much change.

Among the gases that form the atmosphere, oxygen is essential for most living organisms to gain energy. Also, it creates O₃ which blocks off UV rays which are harmful for living organisms.

The phenomenon that occurs when Earth’s magnetic field blocks off the high-energy charged particles from space is an aurora.

Carbon dioxide, too, is essential for photosynthesis of plants. It plays an important role as a greenhouse gas that keeps the appropriate temperature of Earth. If there was no carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the average temperature of Earth would be about 20 to 30°C lower than what it is now, and it would put great limits in organisms’ prosperity. However, if there is too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere like today, it causes the greenhouse effect which results in the rising of the average temperature of Earth and causes global warming.

Nitrogen which takes up the most part of the atmosphere also plays an important role. Among gases, nitrogen has the lowest reaction, so it doesn’t easily react with any other elements. If the atmosphere was composed of a different kind of gas that has a good reaction instead of nitrogen, Earth’s atmosphere would not keep a stable status due to many chemical reactions.

The atmosphere plays the role of a shield that keeps Earth safe from all kinds of dangerous objects that fly from the outside of Earth such as meteors. When a big meteor enters Earth by Earth’s gravity, most of it burns up due to the friction against the atmosphere. So there is hardly any meteor that actually collides with the surface. On the other hand, Mercury and the Moon where there are no atmosphere and Mars which has very little atmosphere create huge craters when they collide with meteors. This shows how important the atmosphere is.

Some planets such as Venus, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune have atmosphere, too, but the thick atmospheres of Venus, Jupiter, and Saturn are tens of times heavier than Earth’s. As for the constituents of atmosphere, Venus is mainly of carbon dioxide, and Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are mainly of hydrogen and helium, which is not appropriate for living organisms to survive.

Earth’s atmosphere is composed of the most ideal structure and constituents for the survival of living organisms, and it plays the role of the first protective film of Earth.

Earth’s magnetic field, a shield blocking off high-energy charged particles of space

Earth’s magnetic field blocks off various kinds of harmful, high-energy charged particles that fly towards Earth from outer space. Due to the high temperature of the Sun, atoms are separated into electrons and protons, and this lets electrically charged particles [plasma] exist in the solar wind. These high-energy charged particles with high energy travel at the speed of hundreds of kilometers per second and are harmful to living organisms. When an organism is exposed to a particle with high energy, the impact is great. It is like you get a bigger injury if hit by a stone that travels fast than by a stone that travels slowly.

That’s why high-energy charged particles can cause chromosomal abnormality in cells or cancer if they enter an organism’s body. If Earth is exposed to the charged particles, all electronic equipment and electronics on Earth may stop working. In fact, in 1989 when the solar activities became active, transformers were burnt and the power system was paralyzed, and communication was cut off for two weeks in Quebec, Canada.

The living organisms on Earth are protected from the high-energy charged particles thanks to Earth’s magnetic field. The phenomenon that occurs when Earth’s magnetic field blocks off the high-energy charged particles is an aurora. An aurora is produced as the high-energy charged particles emit light when they meet Earth’s magnetic field and are collided with the upper atmosphere while moving to the Polar Regions by the electromagnetic force.

People are living their busy lives every day, unaware of the existence of Earth’s atmosphere and magnetic field or their importance. However, even at this moment, the atmosphere and the magnetic field are working as our shields, blocking off meteors and high-energy charged particles that fly towards Earth. Life can exist on Earth thanks to the invisible forces that are protecting it.

For this is what the LORD says—he who created the heavens, he is God; he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it; he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited—he says: “I am the LORD, and there is no other.”Isa 45:18