The earth’s magnetic field deflects the solar wind, which is particles from the sun. This is what causes the aurora, and protects us from solar radiation a bit. The ozone helps also.
The magnetosphere is tens of thousands of miles wide, and protects the earth from solar storms. NASA has discovered that at times cracks in the magnetic shield develop, for a time, before re-closing; this can spur on space storms. Energy can trickle in through the cracks, so that earth inhabitants experience this through problems with satellites and radio communication.
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