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magnetism question.

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Hello there!

I recently found an interesting article that compared the different magnetic strengths of the planets vs the sun vs what we have on earth. It got my mind racing in different directions straight into brick walls.

for example: if the magnetism of the sun is only .0001T-.4T, How can breaks in these magnetic field lines (I believe that is what causes a filament eruption and/or CME?) release such noteworthy amounts of energy? How much of a role does magnetism actually have in containing the power behind the sun? When I use my common sense that the magnet acts as more of a pulling force, my mind also jumps straight back into gravity and mass. What causes a field line to snap? How hard could it be to snap a field line created by a magnet about as strong as a fridge magnet.

Of course, being a giant ball of nuclear fusion and constant entropic radiation plays into the power behind the beautiful star of ours, but if our own rather weak .25>.65G magnetic field can protect us from such radiation, why wouldn't the strongest man-made magnet of 45.5T act as an impenetrable shield? Would placing a fridge magnet inside the core of our own planet increase its field strength 3x. Is it mass, gravity, and magnetism acting in unity somehow? This just doesn't make sense to me. Probably because physics is "Greek to me".


I think I'm just very lost as to how such miniscule magnetic strengths can create such powerful forces. Saying magnetism plays a small role in space weather feels wrong. 


Please let me know if I am making sense. Putting these thoughts into words is harder than I hoped it'd be, and I am absolutely no physicist or mathematician. This stuff is so amazing though, every little thing I learn is like a puzzle-piece to an infinite puzzle.😵

8 minutes ago, shirleydarkillustrat said:

a magnet about as strong as a fridge magnet.

hold up. https://nationalmaglab.org/fieldsmagazine/archives/magnetic-field-of-sun 

I was way off... This is the article that I was reading. So, that just intensifies the curiosity more.

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2 hours ago, shirleydarkillustrat said:


For reference, we measure our geomagnetic field in nT(nanoteslas). That would make it more like 100,000nT-400,000,000nT.

The reason it's as significant as it is doesn't have so much to do with the field strength as it does with the mass and area of magnetically charged plasma on the surface of the sun. Because there is more material of one or more polarities in a sunspot, there is more energy built up at the moment of a flare or CME. The magnetic structure of sunspots can allow for growth of the spot, and further increase the potential for a flare or CME of great strength.

A fridge magnet by comparison is extremely small and usually quite thin. While the strength of its field is greater, it extends a much smaller radius from the magnet itself.

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