Saturday, August 18, 2012

Heavily Shielded Twin spacecraft Will Enter Treacherous Van Allen Radiation Belts


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Heavily Shielded Twin spacecraft Will Enter Treacherous Van Allen Radiation Belts
By Alyssa A. Botelho
www.washingtonpost.com
8-17-12

     A pair of armored NASA spacecraft will soon head into one of the most treacherous regions of outer space on a mission to understand how radioactive particles that surround the Earth affect our satellites and astronauts. The two will journey into the Van Allen radiation belts, doughnut-shaped rings of radioactive particles that encircle Earth. The particles, which are expelled from the sun, are pulled into these belts by Earth’s magnetic field — the same force that swings a compass needle toward the North Pole. “We are trying to go to a place that everyone else tries to avoid,” said Rick Fitzgerald, the project manager of the Radiation Belt Storm Probes mission at the Applied Physics Laboratory of Johns Hopkins University. . . .

. . . “This is the most rugged and best-instrumented mission ever flown to measure radiation,” Fitzgerald said. . . .
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2 comments :

  1. It's odd that they didn't conduct this study whilst or, before allegedly going to the moon, eh? Or even when they've supposedly been sending craft out to Mars...
    Like I said, it's odd... 0_o

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'll have to echo 'Bear's' comment. The Apollo missions didn't even provide a 30spf sunscreen for the astronauts in the late 60's and early 70's to protect them from these 'most treacherous' Van Allen belts. Big 'hmmmmmm' and 'ya think?' If they weren't so 'dangerous'... 'we' could have gone on several flyby's of the moon with the space shuttle program... I mean, really... does it cost any more to go to the moon and do a couple of laps than it does to circle the earth for 2 or 3 or 5 weeks?

    ReplyDelete

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