How do space officials prepare for the radiation threat posed to astronauts on their journeys to Mars?


Mars is concerned with everyone in the space industry, as there are already many automated missions that plan to travel to the Red Planet, as companies and space agencies are currently trying to send people there, and perhaps this task will pose more challenges, one of these obstacles is radiation, Therefore, the researchers are working to find a way to protect the human crew from dangerous radiation in deep space.

According to the American “space” website, humans evolved under the protective cover, which is the atmosphere of the Earth and the magnetosphere, so our bodies are not like the robots that we launch in remote areas of the solar system. We are created from organic materials that must be protected from harmful radiation.

The radiation comes from energy waves, there is radiation around us all the time, even the potassium-rich bananas emit radiation, but the amount of radiation we are exposed to regularly is so low that our body adapts well to it.

But some energy waves can damage our cells and our DNA faster than our body can repair the damage.

These harmful waves are part of the electromagnetic spectrum that includes gamma rays, x-rays and some ultraviolet rays, which is why health officials advise people to use sunscreen.

Tori Bruno, CEO of United Launch Alliance for Spaceflight, spoke about the radiation and challenges posed to attempts by Mars during a presentation at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Maryland.

Bruno said that NASA has already started thinking about these tasks by studying the sun with more interest, as missions such as NASA’s Parker Solar Probe, which was launched in 2018, can collaborate with the European Space Agency on the orbit, which was launched Earlier this year, it helps determine the design and timing of Mars’ missions based on the sun’s cycles of activity by measuring levels when the sun emits radiation levels above average.

In the presentation, Bruno added, traditional materials such as water, concrete and lead are used as a radiation barrier.

“We will need some new material that is more efficient at protecting this radiation, but nothing we can use today to send people safely to the Red Planet and back,” Bruno said.

Astronauts on the International Space Station do not have to worry about a massive amount of radiation because most individual missions last from six months to less than a year.

But it takes about 180 days for a return trip to Mars, and sending people to the Red Planet will be worthwhile only if they can spend weeks, months, or even a whole year there exploring the Mars environment.

It is difficult to study this radiation environment from Earth, so sending experiments to the moon and Mars and making strict observations will be necessary to send the first humans to Mars.


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