Moon has hazardous levels of radiation – A study reveals

A team of Chinese and German scientists reported that astronauts to the moon would be exposed to 200 to 1000 times the radiation we experience on Earth. These radiation levels are two to three times more than they experience today aboard the Internation Space Station, and the moon explorers would require thick-walled structures to protect themselves. 

China’s lander Chang’e 4, named after the Chinese moon goddess, provides the first complete measurement of radiation exposure from the lunar surface. According to the study, this data is vital to NASA and others aiming to send humans to the moon. The study is published in the U.S. journal Science Advances.

The Chang’e-4 lunar probe, photographed from the Yutu-2 rover. The measuring device from Kiel is located on the left behind the antenna. Image: © CNSA/CLEP
- Advertisement -

According to Thomas Berger, a physicist with the German Space Agency’s medicine institute, “This is an immense achievement in the sense that now we have a data set which we can use to benchmark our radiation” and better understand the potential risk to people on the moon.

Read Also: Mercury probe to search for life on Venus during the flyby

Passengers on a trans-Atlantic flight experience 40 to 100 times more radiation levels; However, they are in for a short duration on these flights compared to astronauts exploring the moon, noted Robert Wimmer-Schweingruber of Christian-Albrechts University in Kiel, Germany in his email. The primary risk is cancer. 

According to Wimmer-Schweingruber, the radiation levels should be pretty much the same all over the moon; close to what the models had predicted. 

- Advertisement -

According to Kerry Lee, a space radiation expert at Johnson Space Center in Houston, the levels measured by the Chinese rover agree with the measurement taken by a NASA orbiter. Lee was not part of the Chinese-led study.

The LND in the laboratory in Kiel before the launch. Image: © Stefan Kolbe, Kiel University

NASA is looking to land astronauts on the moon by the end of 2024, and on Mars sometime in the 2030s. 

Under the new Artemis program, the first pair of astronauts would spend about a week on the lunar surface. This is more than twice long when compared to the time spent by Apollo crews. Once a base camp is established, missions would last one to two months.  

According to NASA, all Orion crew capsules flying to the moon will have radiation detectors and safe shelter. As far as the lander goes, three separate corporate teams are developing their own landers with NASA oversight. The first astronauts of the Artemis program will live in the ascent portion of their lander. 

- Advertisement -

For lunar stays that last more than a few days, the German researchers suggest building shelters out of moon dirt with walls about 2 1/2 feet thick. Any thicker walls pose the risk of emitting its own secondary radiation when cosmic rays interact with the lunar soil.

Do you want to publish on Apple News, Google News, and more? Join our writing community, improve your writing skills, and be read by hundreds of thousands around the world!

Source: Phys.org

More from Space – News Landed

+ Mercury probe to search for life on Venus during the flyby
+ Space debris causes ISS to carry out avoidance maneuver

Popular Stories – News Landed

+ Match 9 Sept 27: Royals defeat Kings in a High Scoring thriller
+ Bloomberg investigated as he donates to help Florida felons vote

Related Stories

NASA to announce exciting discovery about Moon

On October 26, at 12 PM EDT NASA will announce an exciting discovery about Moon from the...

Project Olympus, 3D printing houses on the Moon

ICON, a recently started Austin-based startup, became already famous for the 3D-printing of houses. Now they launched a project...

Featured Stories

NASA to launch delicate stowing of samples from asteroid Bennu

NASA's spacecraft OSIRIS-Rex that collected material samples from asteroid Bennu last week is leaking materials into space...

Methane deposits in the Arctic ocean are releasing greenhouse gases

Researchers have found evidence that large amounts of greenhouse gases are being released from frozen methane deposits...

Match 46 Oct 26: KXIP win and make the points table even more interesting

It's match 46 in the IPL, and it's a big match today. KKR takes on KXIP for...

NASA to announce exciting discovery about Moon

On October 26, at 12 PM EDT NASA will announce an exciting discovery about Moon from the...

Daily use of aspirin can lower the risk of COVID-19 death, study finds

A new study reveals that patients hospitalized for COVID-19 that take aspirin daily (low dosage) have a...

The peer pressure of a medical dream in India

If you are either born, studying, or working in India, you pretty much should have come across...

Comment Below

NASA to announce exciting discovery about Moon

On October 26, at 12 PM EDT NASA will announce an exciting discovery about Moon from the...

Project Olympus, 3D printing houses on the Moon

ICON, a recently started Austin-based startup, became already famous for the 3D-printing of houses. Now they launched a project...