Aug 17, 2019 | Updated: 07:24 AM EDT

Missions To Mars Dangerous Due To High Levels of Radiation

Jun 10, 2019 11:33 AM EDT

(Photo : PublicDomainPictures)

All of humanity safely resides in the Earth's magnetic bubble that protects it from anything harsh from space. Space agencies and astronauts are continuous looking for ways to the possibility of people starting a new life in the Moon or the neighboring planets like Mars. However, it is a must that it is emphasized that the radiation in the Red Planet in an unpleasant reality of that planet and for humans, exposure to it is just lethal.

Although there have been several attempts to send an orbiter in Mars, any attempt to send humans there would undoubtedly result in the development of a number of severe health concerns. The European Space Agency (ESA) is still looking into the possibility of sending humans to Mars but are taking precautionary measures and are seriously considering the radiation exposure in the building of the space rocket for astronauts.

People are mostly exposed to small levels of radiation on the surface of the Earth, but most of it is deflected by the Earth's natural protection through its thick atmosphere and the magnetic field that covers the outer part of the Earth. Mars doesn't have any of those protective covering; thus, it cannot provide protection to keep fragile organic objects safe. ESA revealed an estimate that astronauts who will be sent to a mission in Mars would be exposed to 700 times more radiation than what is present on Earth.

The astronauts that are staying in the International Space Stations (ISS) are already exposed to 200 times more radiation, considering that they are within controlled conditions. This rate of exposure is even higher than the exposure pilots are in and it's even higher than the exposure radiology technicians are exposed to in a lifetime. Mission control, on the other hand, makes sure that they abort any mission when solar events seem to threaten the exposure levels of the astronauts in space.

However, a long-term mission to Mars might not make it possible for precautionary measures to apply. Currently, ESA is working with a five-particle accelerator to simulate what cosmic radiation looks like by accelerating the atoms at the level of a significant fraction that imitates the speed of light. The testing done is not only aimed at analyzing how exposure to radiation could affect the human body, but it also aims to test new ways that its harsh effects can be blocked.

The desire to discover more about the planet Mars has always been fueled with good intentions. However, sending astronauts to Mars is the next few years remain to be a bit more premature.

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