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For a space settlement radiation shielding can be categorized into two types, active and passive. Creating high current magnetic fields to counter radiation comes under active and using materials such as lead to block radiation comes under passive.

  1. Am I right ??

  2. For space settlement located near one of the moons, say Ganymede can active shielding be useful and importantly will it be economically feasible as well ??

3.If so what are the proposed designs for executing such a shield ?? Pls attach a link below your answer

4.And also please mention important values in your answer (I mean, for example if high current electricity is being used to produce magnetic fields, mention the value of the voltage)

5.Please explain the physics behind the working of such a shield also please..

Thank you

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  • $\begingroup$ Magnetic fields aren't produced by voltage, they're produced by current. Voltage just represents the force required to drive current through a conventional conductor. Ideally you use superconductors to keep power requirements to a reasonable level, in which case the voltage is zero. $\endgroup$ Sep 12 at 2:56
  • $\begingroup$ OK thanks, can you provide an article(PDF) based on this $\endgroup$ Sep 12 at 6:53
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  1. Am I right ??

Probably!

For space settlement located near one of the moons, say Ganymede can active shielding be useful

Clearly there's a tradeoff. If you can wrangle a few thousand tonnes of rock and ice into orbit and live inside that, active shielding probably isn't very useful. Similarly, if you lived on Ganymede (which is technically "near", after all!) you could just dig a deep enough hole and be just fine without the need for any more sophisticated solutions.

If you're flying out and back to Earth, carrying bulk shielding is probably not going to be practical so effective active shielding is basically essential, not just useful.

and importantly will it be economically feasible as well ??

This rather depends on the nature of the economy that built a habitat in the Jovian system, which is something quite out of of reach of our current capabilities. As E. Brown said in 1955, "I'm sure that in 1985 plutonium is available in every corner drug store, but in 1955 it's a little hard to come by." Who's to say what'll be economical once we're capable of such a project?

But the answer is "probably".

3.If so what are the proposed designs for executing such a shield ?? Pls attach a link below your answer

To save wasted time, it would be helpful for you to mention what you've discovered already, rather than asking for people to do all your research for you.

Because I'm generous, though, here's a summary from the early noughties which might be of interest: Revolutionary Concepts of Radiation Shielding for Human Exploration of Space. I've no doubt there are many more, and newer summaries, but this should get you started.

To summarise the summary:

  • electrical shielding is probably impractical.
  • magnetic shielding with a big superconducting coil might be practical, but making a multi-kilometre radius superconducting coil is a bit challenging and if the coil were to be damaged or quench unexpectedly the energy release would be quite hazardous. (perhaps equivalent to the yield of a small nuclear bomb).
  • magnetic shielding where the magnetic field is inflated by pumping plasma into it might be OK, depending on how amenable the plasma is to being confined (which might be "not at all").

An example of the latter can be found in this presentation on plasma magnets (PDF). They talk about "plasma sails" that can be used for both propulsion and shielding:

  • Surround spacecraft with plasma
  • Rotating magnetic field drives current in the plasma
  • Driven current results in a static magnetic field
  • Static magnetic field acts as a barrier to the Solar Wind

(obviously "solar wind" can be substituted for other sources of charged particles, but read the presentation for more detail).

Note the presence of the late Robert Winglee in the list of people under both links. He's done a lot of stuff on plasma propulsion and his work is probably worth more investigation.

4.And also please mention important values in your answer (I mean, for example if high current electricity is being used to produce magnetic fields, mention the value of the voltage)

Read the linked paper instead. But do expect power requirements of the order of hundreds of kilowatts to megawatts for a shield suitable for a spacecraft or modestly sized habitat.

5.Please explain the physics behind the working of such a shield also please..

No. Instead, why not read the linked paper and come back with specific questions, when you've found something you're having difficulty with?

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