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The Adams Event or the time when the earth lost its protective coat

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The geomagnetic field of the earth is invisible, and yet it has a huge influence on all forms of life on the planet. If it was gone, our lives would look a lot different. Luckily, right now that’s unlikely to happen. But that wasn’t always the case. Our guest and her colleagues found evidence that the last time the earth was without a magnetic field was only 42,000 years ago and its impact changed the face of the planet.

Today, we can only see the Northern lights or Aurora Borealis near the arctic circle. 42,000 years ago when the poles flipped, the geomagnetic field of the earth was almost non-existent. Therefore, charged particles from the sun lighting up could have been seen all over the planet.

Our guest in this episode, Dr Zoe Thomas, is a climate researcher at UNSW in Sydney. Zoe, her team members and collaborators recently published a paper in the highly prestigious scientific journal Science. To publish in Science you have to come up with something truly inspiring, and so they did. They determined the time when the magnetic field of the Earth flipped and almost fully collapsed for some time. The effect that had on our planet is truly terrifying and astounding. One of these effects was probably the extinction of the Australian megafauna and an uprising trend in cave art. Listen to the full story!

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