Solar Storms May Have Been Key to Life on Earth, says NASA

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Solar Life

A study published in the Nature Geoscience states that NASA scientists have figured out that powerful solar explosions have provided the Earth with crucial energy needed to keep it warm and create complex molecules necessary for life, despite Sun’s faintness four billion years ago.

Scientists have long been puzzled about the existence of early organisms on Earth that cropped to life about four billion years ago. Some four billion years ago, the sun shone with only about three-quarters the brightness we see today, but its surface roiled with giant eruptions spewing enormous amounts of solar material and radiation out into the space.

Scientists believe that these solar storms may have provided the Earth with the energy to make it warm. “Back then, Earth received only about 70 percent of the energy from the sun than it does today,” said Vladimir Airapetian, lead author of the paper and a solar scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “That means Earth should have been an icy ball. Instead, geological evidence says it was a warm globe with liquid water. We call this the Faint Young Sun Paradox. Our new research shows that solar storms could have been central to warming Earth.”

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