Extreme solar event of AD775: Potential radiation exposure to crews in deep space

L. W. Townsend, J. A. Porter, W. C. De Wet, W. J. Smith, N. A. McGirl, L. H. Heilbronn, H. M. Moussa

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

The existence of a historically large cosmic event in AD774 or 775, of probable solar origin, has recently been confirmed from records of 14C levels in tree rings located at widely separated locations on Earth, 10Be records in polar ice cores, and historical records of aurora sightings. Usoskin et al (Astronomy & Astrophysics, 2013) suggest that such an event, of solar origin, would have a proton fluence of ∼4.5 � 1010 cm-2 at energies above 30 MeV, with a hard energy spectrum comparable to the event of 23 February 1956. In this work we investigate the possible radiation exposures to crews of missions on the surface of Mars, from such an event. In this work we use the HZETRN radiation transport code, originally developed at NASA Langley Research Center, and the Computerized Anatomical Male and Female human geometry models to estimate exposures for a variety of aluminum shield areal densities similar to those provided by a spacesuit, surface lander, and permanent habitat on the Martian surface. Comparisons of the predicted organ exposures with recently-recommended radiation exposure limits are made. Potential health effects on crews, of such an event, are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication66th International Astronautical Congress 2015, IAC 2015
Subtitle of host publicationSpace - The Gateway for Mankind's Future
PublisherInternational Astronautical Federation, IAF
Pages167-174
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781510818934
StatePublished - 2015
Event66th International Astronautical Congress 2015: Space - The Gateway for Mankind's Future, IAC 2015 - Jerusalem, Israel
Duration: Oct 12 2015Oct 16 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC
Volume1
ISSN (Print)0074-1795

Conference

Conference66th International Astronautical Congress 2015: Space - The Gateway for Mankind's Future, IAC 2015
CountryIsrael
CityJerusalem
Period10/12/1510/16/15

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