The result is clear: Earth’s magnetic field is vital for keeping our atmosphere in place. The magnetosphere of Mars is far simpler and less extensive than that of the Earth.

But evidence collected by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) indicates that the planet may have once had a global magnetic field, generated by an internal dynamo.

You're correct in saying that Mars does not have a magnetic field like Earth. This is an artist's concept comparing the present day magnetic fields on Earth and Mars.

The most that could happen would be that the rotation of the two planets would synchronize like gears so one would rotate clockwise, the other counterclockwise, but I think that has already happened to a point …

Taking both of these factors into account, a space-based magnetic field around Mars only needs to have a strength of roughly 11% that of Earth’s. In comparison, the loss rates on defenseless Venus and Mars could have gone up by a factor of a thousand or more, relative to Earth. The core activity is what maintains the protective magnetic field of Mars’ neighbor closer to the sun. However, these magnetic fields were incredibly weak and short-lived compared to the Earth’s. However, Earth's density is higher than that of Mars – 5.514 g/cm 3 compared to 3.93 g/cm 3 (or 0.71 Earths) – which indicates that Mars' core region contains more lighter elements than Earth's. "I'm very cautious," he said. Study of Earth's magnetosphere began in 1600, when William Gilbert discovered that the magnetic field on the surface of Earth resembled that on a terrella, a small, magnetized sphere.

Earth overall would not be effected by the magnetic field of Mars. Magnetic fields act as the first line of defense against the solar wind.

Strangeway isn't convinced. It's mainly due to the fact that earths core rotates, and the core in Mars doesn't. Early Mars was much more similar to Earth than it is today. Also of course there's quite the difference in mass, as Earth has a diameter roughly twice as big as Mars.

A chance alignment of planets during a passing gust of the solar wind has allowed scientists to compare the protective effects of Earth’s magnetic field with that of Mars’ naked atmosphere. In 1998, the Mars Global Surveyor detected sporadic magnetic fields around the southern hemisphere of Mars. Earth’s magnetic field is very special; these currents cannot form on Venus, because it does not rotate fast enough, or Mercury and Mars, because their cores are too cool.

Such a shield could leave Mars in the relatively protected magnetotail of the magnetic field created by the object, allowing the Red Planet to slowly restore its atmosphere. It had a thick atmosphere, liquid water at its surface, and a global magnetic field. The current scientific consensus is that, like Earth, Mars once had a magnetic field that protected its atmosphere. Mars early magnetic field was likely driven by a dynamo formed from the convection of material in the core as molten iron rises, cools and sinks, much like the Earth core works today.

Limits on magnetic field strength from Magellan magnetometer data are 0.000015 times Earth's field. The current scientific consensus is that, like Earth, Mars once had a magnetic field that protected its atmosphere.

The various Martian magnetic fields do not encompass the entire planet and are local (right image). Scientists think Mars lost all of this when its protective magnetic field collapsed billions of years ago, and solar wind – high-energy particles projected from the Sun – has been stripping the Red Planet's atmosphere away ever since. Mars does not have the same kind of magnetic field as Earth.

In the 1940s, Walter M. Elsasser proposed the model of dynamo theory , which attributes Earth's magnetic field to the motion of Earth's iron outer core . It does have one though, it's just tiny compared to Earth's magnetic field. Current theories of the formation and evolution of the terrestrial planets do support an Earth scale magnetic dipole (magnetic field) on Venus for perhaps the first billion years or so after formation.



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