Oct 21, 2018 | Updated: 04:34 PM EDT

NASA’s Fast Neutron Spectrometer Could help To Survive The Crews From The Radiation Exposure

Apr 06, 2017 06:13 PM EDT


In this open universe, different types of High energy cosmic radiation emitted from the different cosmic explosion, stars, and black holes. All these emissions are detected by gamma, neutron spectrometer when its travel through Space.

When astronomers spent their time in a research facility of International Space Station they have a high chance of cosmic radiation exposure. However, prolonged radiation exposes causes serious health issues to the onboard crew members. So, a group of researchers and engineers at NASA build a neutron Spectrometer Device to monitor radiation exposure.

According to NASA, this neutron spectrometer is now installed in ISS for testing purpose. The spectrometer is a device used to detect particles presence in an emitted radiation from any stars or black holes. From that, they know about nature and measure the energy of the particles in the radiation.

Apart from neutron spectrometer, Mark Christl, team lead at Marshall Space Flight Center said that they already have another Spectrometer. This advanced device already installed on ISS which detects gamma radiation produced by supernovas or black holes, X-rays etc.

However, the device can’t detect neutron radiation that’s why they find another way to detect it. Hence they build the Fast Neutron Spectrometer, designed to detect and measure the energy of neutrons. This Spectrometer is based on more advanced neutron detection technique in this time.

According to EurekAlert, the Fast Neutron Spectrometer is a passive type spectrometer. It means it could sense after neutrons strike on it. Besides, this device comprised an aluminum housing with a plastic scintillator that slows down the neutron when it hits the device. Therefore a glass scintillator fibers absorb the neutrons and re-emit the energy in the form of light.

In addition, this advanced technique in neutron spectrometer provides two distinct signals for measurement. Initially, it measures energy and then it confirms the detected particle is either neutron or another kind of charge particles. Hence it shows a distinct technique that all-plastic devices can’t clearly determine the differences between these signals.

Moreover, this neutron spectrometer is sent to ISS during fifth Orbital ATK resupply mission. It was installed in ISS by NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough on Dec 2, 2016. However, the Fast Neutron Spectrometer will monitor for neutrons for six months and send data about any neutron strike. All this data downloaded daily for processing and analyzed by the research team at Marshall Space center.

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