Plant Response to Radiation

There is background radiation on the Earths surface, but this is different from solar winds and intergalactic cosmic rays (GCR).

Below: the uRADMoniter provides real time monitoring of background radiation at a range of sites around the Earth.

Zoom out to see radiation hot spots around the world!

The Van Allen Belts surround Earth.

When life leaves to the Earth's surface to explore low earth orbit, the moon and mars it leaves the protection of the Earth's magnetosphere. The area that surrounds the earth that has increase amounts of radiation are known as the Van Allen Belts. A Van Allen radiation belt is a zone of energetic charged particles, most of which originate from the solar wind, that are captured by and held around a planet by that planet's magnetic field.

Right: Video illustrates changes in the Van Allen belts shape and intensity.

Source: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center.

The South Atlantic Anomaly

The South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA) is an area where the Earth's inner Van Allen radiation belt comes closest to the Earth's surface, dipping down to an altitude of 200 kilometers (120 mi). This leads to an increased flux of energetic particles in this region and exposes orbiting satellites and the International Space Station to higher-than-usual levels of radiation.

The effect is caused by the non-concentricity of the Earth and its magnetic dipole. The SAA is the near-Earth region where the Earth's magnetic field is weakest relative to an idealized Earth-centered dipole field.

Right: Video illustrates the South Atlantic Anomaly belts shape and intensity.

Source: ESA.

How a linear accelerator works

There are many different types off terrestrial forms that can be generated from a range off different sources. Linear accelerators are one mechanism humans use to generate radiation in order to change biological systems.

Right: Video illustrates how a linear particle accelerator works.

Source: Elekta Radiotherapy.

Fly around the ISS inspecting radiation measurements