Risk Assessment and Shielding Design for Long-Term Exposure to Ionizing Space Radiation 2006-01-2108
NASA is now focused on the agency's vision for space exploration encompassing a broad range of human and robotic missions including missions to Moon, Mars and beyond. As a result, there is a focus on long duration space missions. NASA is committed to the safety of the missions and the crew, and there is an overwhelming emphasis on the reliability issues for space missions and the habitat. The cost effective design of the spacecraft demands a very stringent requirement on the optimization process. Exposure from the hazards of severe space radiation in deep space and/or long duration missions is ‘the show stopper.’ Thus, protection from the hazards of severe space radiation is of paramount importance to the new vision. It is envisioned to have long duration human presence on the Moon for deep space exploration. As NASA is looking forward to exploration in deep space, there is a need to go beyond current technology to the technology of the future. Faced with a limited budget and an expanding space exploration program, the old way of doing business is inadequate, and NASA requires revolutionary technologies to make advances. The technology of today is adequate for short-term human exposure to space radiation in low earth orbit (LEO) missions. We are developing methodology and concomitant technology for probabilistic reliability based risk assessment from exposure from space radiation for long duration and/or deep space missions. The study will provide a guideline for radiation exposure for career and/or long duration mission astronauts and their safety.