Mars Explorers Will Tackle Radiation, Depression … and Space Bread

Space.com | 6/5/2019 | Doris Elin Salazar
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NEW YORK — Sending astronauts to Mars will be hard, but a panel of experts considered the details of how to make it work — from living underground to exercising in space and even making bread on the Red Planet — during an in-depth, imaginative conversation at this year's World Science Festival.

The route to the main topic here for the May 29 event "We Will Be Martians" included an early pit stop to discuss the moon. In particular, the panel described how a crewed lunar-return project like Artemis, recently proposed by NASA, could support a human mission to Mars.

Journalist - Lynn - Sherr - Book - Sally

Journalist Lynn Sherr, who wrote the book "Sally Ride: America's First Woman In Space" (Simon & Schuster, 2015), asked an upbeat and refreshing set of questions throughout the night.

Related: Watch the Clouds on Mars Glide by in This Curiosity Rover Video

Michelle - Rucker - Dr - Yvonne - Cagle

Michelle Rucker, Dr. Yvonne Cagle and Kim Binsted onstage at "We Will Be Martians," an event held at the New York University Skirball Center for the Performing Arts on May 29, 2019.

Sherr asked NASA engineer Michelle Rucker about the basics, like how NASA decides when to launch.

Sherr - Question - Humans - Ride - Panel

To Sherr's question about what humans will take along for the ride, the panel said that Red Planet crews would take a whole lot of water. Rucker said that the Curiosity rover is the largest object humans have successfully landed on Mars, and a human mission could weigh as much as 20 times more than the robot. Water would not only support human life, but could also block radiation, the panelists said.

Radiation is a huge consideration for these trips, astronaut Dr. Yvonne Cagle pointed out. For journeys that could last half a year, a water barrier might protect a crew from these harmful waves, Cagle said; water could be pumped around the sleeping...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Space.com
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