- Press Release
- August 11, 2022
Crewed Missions to Mars: Modeling the Impact of Astrophysical Charged Particles on Astronauts and Assessing Health Effect
The impact of exposure to astrophysical ionizing radiation on astronaut health is one of the main concerns in planning crewed missions to Mars.
Astronauts will be exposed to energetic charged particles from Galactic and Solar origin for a prolonged period with little protection from a thin spacecraft shield in transit and from the rarefied Martian atmosphere when on the surface. Adverse impacts on astronaut health include, for example, Acute Radiation Syndrome, damage to the nervous system, and increased cancer risk.
Using a combination of radiation measurements and numerical modeling with the GEANT4 package, we calculate the distribution of radiation dose in various organs of the human body for various expected scenarios simulated with a model human phantom. We rely on medical studies to assess the impact of enhanced levels of radiation dose on various physiological systems and on the overall health of astronauts.
We suggest mitigation strategies such as improved ways of shielding and dietary supplements, and make recommendations for the safety of astronauts in future crewed missions to Mars.
Dimitra Atri, Caitlin MacArthur, Sriram Devata, Shireen Mathur, Giulia Carla Bassani, Roberto Parisi, Dionysios Gakis, Konstantin Herbst, Azza Al Bakr, Tammy Witzens
Comments: 93 pages
Subjects: Space Physics (physics.space-ph); Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
Cite as: arXiv:2208.00892 [physics.space-ph] (or arXiv:2208.00892v1 [physics.space-ph] for this version)
From: Dimitra Atri
[v1] Mon, 1 Aug 2022 14:31:33 UTC (1,258 KB)
Full paper: https://arxiv.org/abs/2208.00892