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Outer space is a notoriously harsh environment, exposing astronauts to high levels of radiation. And radiation exposure can increase cancer and heart disease rates in earthbound humans.
But a new study has some good news: Space radiation doesn't seem to increase astronauts' risk of death from cancer or heart disease, at least not at the doses they experienced during historical missions. Still, longer missions — such a mission to Mars — will likely come with much greater radiation doses that could pose larger health risks, the authors said.
Space - Travel - Body - Levels - Radiation
Space travel exposes the body to higher levels of ionizing radiation than those typically experienced on Earth. And at high doses, that radiation has been tied not just to cancer and heart disease, but to a host of other health problems as well.
Russian or Soviet cosmonauts who had traveled to space at least once since 1961. These participants were followed for about 25 years, on average.
Time - Participants - NASA - Astronauts - %
During this time, 89 of the participants died. Among the 53 NASA astronauts who died, 30% died from cancer and...
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