This is an artist's concept comparing the present day magnetic fields on Earth and Mars. Earth's magnetic field is generated by an active dynamo -- a hot core of molten metal.
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Earth and Martian Magnetic Fields (Artist Concept)

This is an artist's concept comparing the present day magnetic fields on Earth and Mars. Earth's magnetic field is generated by an active dynamo -- a hot core of molten metal. The magnetic field surrounds Earth and is considered global (left image). The various Martian magnetic fields do not encompass the entire planet and are local (right image). The Martian dynamo is extinct, and its magnetic fields are "fossil" remnants of its ancient, global magnetic field.

Image details

ID#:
PIA15953

Date added:
2012-08-02

Mission:
Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)

Spacecraft:
Curiosity

Size:
982 x 557 pixels (width x height)

Rating:



Views:
2,602

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA15953.tif (1.64 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA15953.jpg (0.06 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/GSFC