Questions tagged [radiation]

Questions about impact of radiation on space exploration.

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How much solar radiation hits a spacecraft in transit to Mars?

How can I solve for the amount of radiation that hits a Mars transit vehicle, in transit? What formulas should I use? I am mostly focused on solar radiation.
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Good solar absorptivity and infrared emissivity values for non-anodized machined aluminum

Existing sources that I'm looking at show a wide range of possible absorptivity/emissivity values for aluminum: http://www.solarmirror.com/fom/fom-serve/cache/43.html https://www.thermoworks.com/...
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How to model the kinematics of gases expelled from comets and planetary atmospheres? [closed]

Once the ices of comets sublimate, where do they move to, and with which equations do you describe their motion in the interplanetary medium? Similarly, where do the gases that are stripped from the ...
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JWST detector heat load

A lot of information has been published about shielding the JWST from solar radiation and the need to maintain the detectors at a low temperature, but little has been said about the other sources of ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Software to estimate radiation dose for an orbit

I am searching for a software/method, possibly open-source or free, to estimate the radiation dose for an orbit around earth.
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Why does the Buzz Aldrin Mars Cycler not play a larger role in planning for Mars exploration?

In 1985 Buzz Aldrin AKA “Dr. Rendezvous” proposed using a pair of space station habitats in solar cycler orbits as “Up and Down Escalators” for crewed Earth-Mars transfers. https://en.wikipedia.org/...
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Are valleys a good alternative to caves for radiation shielding?

Lava tube systems and caves have been discussed a lot when it comes to establishing a base on the Moon or Mars in order to protect it from the continuous exposure to lethal radiation, as well as ...
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A passive radiation shield to protect a space settlement in Jupiter's orbit

I know that passive radiation shielding blocks radiation. Layer 1: tin and lead - 1.5m Layer 2: Kevlar, Mylar - 0.5m for MMOD protection Layer 3: Carbyne - 1m for strength Layer 4: beta cloth and ...
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1 answer
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Feasibility of an artificial magnetosphere for a space settlement

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 ...
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Measuring properties of Van Allen radiation belts

How are the properties of the Van Allen radiation belts measured or monitored? Below is the link of my question, that leads me to asking this one. One method is mentioned there but there may be others....
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Analyzing Van Allen belt's radiation Dataset

Is it possible for us to somehow get the dataset related to radiation of Van Allen Belt, so as to work upon it and analyze it using AI model. I'm looking for numerical data regarding level of ...
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Why did some of the optical sensors of CYGNSS satellites suffer UV and radiation-induced loss of sensitivity? Was this unexpected? If so, why?

This answer to How fast do optical surfaces get dirty or damaged in space? says: ...On the CYGNSS spacecraft UV and radiation exposure lead to a marked loss of sensitivity on some of the optical ...
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What are the differences between 'Shield thickness' and 'Sphere thickness'?

In space radiation shielding-related literature, equivalent BFO doses are sometimes provided in terms of sphere thickness (g/cm^2). For example in Fig. 1 of [Ref 1] (the figure is attached below), the ...
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22 votes
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How much UV radiation will Mars inhabitants receive?

I have a new weather station for my home, and it included a UV radiation monitor. But I then thought, “What’s the UV radiation levels on Mars? How much higher is it than Earth?” I tried searching the ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Does cosmic radiation have a predominant 'direction of origin'?

Considering some speculative designs, and am going through radiation-shielding options. It seems that, other than during solar flare activity, the main thing to protect against on a day-to-day basis ...
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2 answers
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How did the Apollo guidance computers deal with radiation?

I was wondering how the Apollo guidance computer handled the radiation encountered in space
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1 answer
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Is radiation on Mars line-of-sight? [duplicate]

Roughly a year ago, there was a TV show about colonizing Mars; National Geographic channel I think. The habitats were underground to avoid the Sun's radiation. So I'm wondering: does the radiation ...
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Highest frequencies of EMPs in space

When a nuke detonates, an EMP at about 100 MHz followd. A pulsar on the other hand, has a comparatively low frequency, and while I know that this frequency depends on its spin and doesn't represent ...
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Resources/guidelines on space electronics compliance?

Space hardware suffers from various effects such as radiation, heating, vibration, off-gassing, material degradation and so on. While these effects are mentioned in most space engineering books, I am ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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How will the future Mars Space Suit Helmet design protect Astronauts from Martian Radiation?

Mars Space Suit Helmet Visor's were mostly made up of polycarbonate [1], the same material used for EMU's visor for performing EVA in earth orbit. Meanwhile, Mars' radiation is 2.5x higher. How are we ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Rad-Hard vs Space-Hard computing

Radiation hardened CPUs like RAD750 are radiation hardened for up to 1000 gray. Cool. But, as CPUs have advanced way ahead their mechanical counterparts in miniaturization and fragility, energy ...
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10 votes
1 answer
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What makes Insight's RAD750 processor so radiation resistant? (compared to 1998 iMac's PowerPC 750)

Gizmodo's A 1990s iMac Processor Powers NASA’s Perseverance Rover references NewScientist and says: However, there’s a major difference between the iMac’s CPU and the one inside the Perseverance ...
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8 answers
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Can we power things (like cars or similar rovers) on earth in the same way Perseverance generates power?

I was watching a video on the engineering of Perseverance and it states that the rover is powered by 4.8kg of Plutonium Dioxide. I was wondering if that similar process of electricity generation can ...
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10 votes
1 answer
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How radioactive is surface regolith on the Moon?

Use of regolith for shielding from cosmic radiation seems the most practical solution for perspective lunar surface bases. But lunar regolith should gather some secondary radiation while being ...
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Satellites | Debris & EMR

Over time we are launching plethora of communication satellites into space, with old ones reaching their lifespan and new ones replacing them. My Question is two folds: Are we simply creating more ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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Are Solid State Hard Drives in space made from radiation-hardened FLASH memory, or do they just use older technology with higher voltage and charge?

Answers to Why is the James Webb Space Telescope's data storage space so small? have got me thinking. Solid State Hard Drives (SSDs) are usually made from FLASH memory though alternatives like ...
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2 answers
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For deep space missions, how thick must the water filled layer within the ship's hull be to effectively shield against cosmic rays? [closed]

Initially i proposed a 27cm thick barrier. But im not really sure thatll be enough
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How close a crewed spacecraft could orbit Jupiter?

How close could a crewed spacecraft orbit Jupiter? I read that Juno was as close as 5,000 km from Jupiter's top clouds, but I'm wondering about a spacecraft with humans inside (provided it's protected ...
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23 votes
2 answers
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How does steel deteriorate in translunar space?

To confirm the identity of a 1966 Centaur booster returning near earth in 2020, NASA took some spectroscopy observations. They didn't match those of the same metal (301 stainless steel) on earth, ...
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4 votes
0 answers
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What is the required laser intensity to ionize interstellar gas in front of a Bussard ramjet?

In a Bussard ramjet interstellar gas is collected using a large magnetic field to be fused and used as reaction mass. While a number of papers have explored the constraints on the magnetic field, what ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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How do deep-space spacecraft and space stations protect the crew and electronic equipment from radiation during long-duration missions?

Question: How would a deep-space spacecraft protect its crew and electronics from cosmic radiation, solar wind, and solar events? I'm trying to design a hypothetical space station and have been doing ...
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1 answer
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Could the magnetosphere of Mercury protect humans?

In theory, we built a space station orbiting Mercury like the ISS on Earth. Will the magnetosphere of Mercury similarly protect humans from this radiation (despite being close to the sun)?
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Can an electrostatic shield provide protection from the Van Allen belt?

Would an electrostatic shield provide enough protection for a crewed space craft to survive in the Van Allen belt for more then an hour?
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Could Laika have survived the Van Allen radiation during the intended duration of her mission?

Laika the dog was the first animal in space, aboard Sputnik 2. According to this answer, her mission was intended for 10 days, but Laika survived only 2 days due to the spacecraft overheating. ...
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6 votes
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What would it take to survive the radiation on the surface of Ganymede?

Out of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter, only Callisto is at a safe distance from its parent planet that the radiation is low enough so one is able to colonize it. Io is totally uncolonizable (from ...
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2 votes
0 answers
37 views

What is the radiation level at the L2 Mars-Sun point?

This answer shows that the radiation levels at the L2 Mars-Sun point will be lower because it lies within Mars' solar umbra. So what will the level of radiation be at the L2 Mars-Sun point? Also, how ...
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9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Would astronauts on the ISS be affected by the radiation from a global nuclear war?

I was wondering what would happen to the ISS astronauts if some global disaster wiped out all ground support. This question tells us that a 2-person crew might survive up to a year on stockpiled food ...
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4 answers
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If solar radiation can heat up gas particles in the thermosphere, why will it not heat up a spacecraft?

NASA says that the reason why a spacecraft does not get hot in the thermosphere is because there are not enough gas particles to come into contact with the spacecraft to heat it up. If you were ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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How will space suit computers likely be radiation hardened?

Writing this comment inspired the following question: Space suits are critical to life, so if there's a solar storm and the astronaut has received a less-than-lethal dose of radiation, they'll be ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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How Safe Is Phobos in Terms of Radiation Exposure?

I am wondering if Mars' body provides enough protection against radiation on Phobos. The lack of magnosphere is a significant factor highly worsening the radiation exposure, making the planet ...
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8 votes
1 answer
391 views

Influence of solar wind and radiation pressure on a sail

Solar wind is composed of a mixture of materials travelling between 250 and 750 km per second. Radiation pressure involves electromagnetic field travelling at light speed. If considering a sail in ...
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2 answers
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Were there any noticeable immune system changes observed for people staying for long in space?

I have read this article about how difficult is to send ships to another possible habitable world. One aspect deals with the human bacterial companions which might be greatly affected by prolonged ...
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1 answer
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How is Parker Solar Probe so robust against coronal mass ejections?

Phys.org's Revealing the physics of the Sun with Parker Solar Probe quotes "Tim Horbury, a lead researcher on Parker Solar Probe's FIELDS instruments based at Imperial College London" as saying: "...
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9 votes
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Why make X-ray shielding from titanium, when lead is 6 times lighter?

Probes visiting Jupiter and its moons protect their equipment from X-rays with titanium shielding. Juno had 180 kg of the stuff. Europa Clipper is expected to have about that much too. Terrestrial ...
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11 votes
1 answer
2k views

Did the Apollo missions fly "over the top" of the Van Allen radiation belts?

In the video The Moon Trees That Flew To The Moon On Apollo 14 after about 08:47 Scott Manley says that Apollo 14 "flew up over the top" of the Van Allen radiation ...
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48 votes
3 answers
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Why don't we shield existing CPUs from radiation instead of designing new ones?

I've just read this article about space-graded CPUs [1]. I am not a space expert at all but a question was born naturally: why don't we prefer to shield earth-designed CPUs (far less expensive) than ...
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6 votes
1 answer
256 views

What would the Voyager probes look like today?

In the 40+ years since their launching, after traveling through the solar system and now beyond, what would the Voyager probes look like today if we could see them up close? Would they look noticeably ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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Is the far side of the tidally locked Europa moon safe from Jupiter's radiation?

From Wikipedia's Europa (moon); Orbit and rotation: Europa orbits Jupiter in just over three and a half days, with an orbital radius of about 670,900 km....and is tidally locked to Jupiter, with ...
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Alternatives to an ozone layer

Our home planet earth has low concentration of ozone in its atmosphere, protecting it from UV radiation, could Exoplanets share the same method but have a different gas in the atmosphere which has a ...
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5 votes
0 answers
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Pycrete or Pycrete 2.0 Q Has there been any research for structures against radiation protection in space with Pycrete type material?

Background on Pykrete: Pykrete is a frozen ice alloy, originally made of approximately 14 percent sawdust or some other form of wood pulp (such as paper) and 86 percent ice by weight (6 to 1 by ...
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