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Old June 25 2009, 03:26 PM   #25
Daedalus12
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Re: manned Mission to Mars discussion

SilentP wrote: View Post
Daedalus12 wrote: View Post
I can tell you for sure that NASA scientists now think it's one of the major engineering challenges. It's a stumbling block in the sense that NASA won't do a manned mission to Mars until the magnitude of the radiation risk is well-known.
I may be incorrect, and they've actually done it, but wouldn't you have thought with all the probes being sent towards Mars and in that general direction, that they would have fitted the in-transit vehicle with some form of radiation sensors to get a feel for the amount of radiation present in the open vacuum?
The amount of radiation is well-known. The total amount of exposure expected for a 2.5 years manned mission is equivalent of about few hundred years here on Earth. It's the effect on human body that is not well-known i.e. how much is the increase in the risk of dying from cancer. The estimates vary widely and there is no good way to test it. I admit NASA is very much conservative on this front. Actually they are very conservative on most fronts. But the risk is real and not some figment of imagination.
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