[ RadSafe ] Mission to Mars

JPreisig at aol.com JPreisig at aol.com
Thu Jun 30 10:52:51 CDT 2011

Hi Again,
      This is from:    _jpreisig at aol.com_ (mailto:jpreisig at aol.com)    .
      Sure, a manned mission is probably quite  expensive right now.  
However, we are not starting from
zero knowledge for a spaceflight to Mars using reactor power.  See  Nerva, 
Prometheus, etc.
The government is far ahead of what we common folks know, and for tactical  
reasons, we cannot hear
about much of the work.  Similarly for plasma physics.  Yes,  unmanned 
missions should occur to MARS
first.  Hey, haven't we already had some unmanned missions to  Mars???  
Will NASA scientists
continue to work on Prometheus???
      Yes, Maury, we are protected here on Earth  via the Van Allen belt, 
the Earth's magnetic field, etc.
See Accelerator Health Physics by Patterson and Thomas for information  
about early work on 
cosmic rays,  Then look at NASA documents, Health Physics, Journal of  
Geophysical Research
(in the area of Earth magnetism etc.) for articles on this subject.   For a 
human crew on a Mars bound
spaceship, one bad solar flare can ruin your whole day (it could kill all  
the members of such a space
crew.)   See also Brookhaven National Lab's website about the  accelerator 
there that is used for
NASA studies of space radiation  Earth  accelerators approach  perhaps some 
of the particle energies  of
cosmic rays.  Clearly we have some understanding of sunspots,  solar flares 
and the like.
     Nothing ventured, nothing gained  The space  flights to the moon 
weren't shielded by the VanAllen
belt and Earth's magnetic field.  Those Moon explorers made the trip  and 
survived.  How long did the 
Moon missions last????  Several weeks or months????.  Aren't we  now in the 
same time ballpark 
with a trip to Mars in travel time????  NASA, Russian crews etc.  take 
risks.  They are aware of the risks and
go forward.  They are brave.  Very good ground based Engineers  and 
Scientific ground crews 
support the flight efforts.  Von Braun and company had many failed  
launches before
launches started to work fairly routinely.
     Hope the floodwaters recede in Nebraska.
     Now back to work????
     Regards,     Joseph R. (Joe)  Preisig, PhD

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