Connect with us

Space

Living on Mars May Cause Humans to Develop Dementia

STOCKTREK IMAGES/MARK STEVENSON/GETTY IMAGES

The possible human colonization of Mars has been a hot topic, but a further study may undermine these plans.

With so much radiation on the Red Planet, health risks are a huge factor, and researchers have recently found evidence that living on such a planet could possibly lead humans to develop dementia.

Extremely high levels of radiation on Mars can pass through materials such as plastic, metal and even human skin, which can cause cancer and cognitive disorders. In fact, exposure to high levels of radiation has been shown to cause dementia.

According to an article published by US National Library of Medicine & National Institutes of Health (US National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health), several people who received radiation treatment for cancer eventually developed dementia. The article said in part:

When a cancer patient develops brain metastasis, death is usually imminent, but aggressive treatment in some patients with limited or no systemic disease allows long-term survival.

Will humans reach Mars?

The article continued:

In these patients, the late deleterious effects of therapy are particularly tragic. We report 12 patients who developed late complications of total brain radiotherapy (WBRT) administered as a single treatment (4 patients) or in combination with surgical resection (8 patients).

“And the results were bleak”: Within 5 to 36 months (mean, 14) all patients developed progressive dementia, ataxia and urinary incontinence, causing severe disability in all and leading to death in 7.

For those wishing to visit Mars, this news is particularly disturbing unless scientists can somehow prevent radiation from entering space suits. They plan to send a radiation assessment detector to Mars before humans set foot on the planet.

Cancer Treatments Show Scary Results

Charles Limoli, professor of radiation oncology at the University of California at Irvine Medical School, said:

This is not positive news for astronauts on a two- to three-year trip to Mars.

Exposure to these particles can lead to a number of potential central nervous system complications that can occur during and persist long after the actual space travel – such as various performance decreases, memory deficits, anxiety, depression, and impaired decision making.

What is even more disturbing is that “many of these adverse consequences to cognition can continue and progress throughout life,” he explained.

In addition, the university’s research team found that radiation can affect the “fear extinction,” which is when the brain suppresses disturbing memories, such as when a near-drowning person might like to get in the water again.

Limoli said:

Deficits in extinction of fear can make you prone to anxiety, which can become problematic over a three-year trip to and from Mars.

There is already evidence that humans who spent some time in space had serious health problems because a few days ago was reported that astronauts aboard the International Space Station had developed clots and reversal of blood flow…

This is definitely not good news for humans who plan to live permanently in space.

Source

Advertisement
Comments

Space

How much water is there on Mars and is there enough for future colonists?

For many centuries, man dreamed of conquering the Red Planet, and it seems that in the very near future we will finally be able to take our first step in obtaining an interplanetary view. In order to be able to successfully land on Mars, NASA experts plan to first identify the most suitable place for the landing of future colonists. The main criterion in strict selection will be the presence of ice water, without which the existence of a person in the distant cold desert of a reddish hue would become completely impossible. So where should the first people land on the Red Planet and how much water is on Mars?

Mars and its most suitable zone for the construction of the first human colony outside the Earth

Is there a lot of water on Mars?

According to an article published on the portal phys.org, huge reserves of ice water on Mars can be located only at a depth of 2.5 centimeters from the surface. Its presence will be a key factor in choosing a potential landing site, because such important water resources of the planet will be one of the basic necessities for replenishing the colony’s drinking water reserves and making rocket fuel.

In order to find accessible ice water on Mars, NASA uses data from two spacecrafts at once – NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and Mars Odyssey Orbiter. According to the latest data received from the probes, future colonists will not even require the use of excavators and other heavy equipment to extract the vital resource, which can significantly reduce the cost of the course of the future mission.

Map of water ice on Mars

Blue shades show the closest water sources to the surface, red shades show the most distant ones. Black spots are sandy deserts, and the white area can be an ideal candidate for the landing of the first astronauts.

Due to the fact that liquid water cannot exist for a long time in a rarefied Mars atmosphere, almost instantly evaporating into outer space, scientists have yet to develop a technology that can allow water production without loss. The exact location of the ice can be detected using two heat-sensitive instruments – the Martian climate probe MRO and the thermal imaging camera system (THEMIS), designed specifically for Mars Odyssey.

Although there are a large number of places of interest for scientists on Mars, only a few of them are able to provide suitable landing sites for astronauts. So, despite the fact that the middle and southern latitudes of Mars receive more sunlight than its more northern regions, planetologists believe that the most preferred place for landing on Mars will be the Arcadia Planitia region, where water ice reserves are located only 30 centimeters under the surface of the planet.

Researchers believe that at present, the total water resources of the Red Planet are approximately 65 million cubic kilometers, which could well be enough to cover the surface of Mars with a layer of 35 meters thick water. Well, perhaps, future Martian colonists are unlikely to have to worry about the fact that the water on the Red Planet will someday end.

Continue Reading

Space

The Interstellar Research Initiative plans to send people to the exoplanet of Proxima Centauri b

In an attempt to protect humanity from extinction in the event of some kind of global catastrophe of a planetary scale, a group of scientists announced a bold plan for the colonization of a distant exoplanet.

Proxima Centauri b

Scientists from the Initiative for Interstellar Studies said they were considering sending people to a potentially inhabited exoplanet in another stellar system.

The most promising option they consider, Proxima Centauri b, which is 4.24 light years away from Earth, which means the journey will take centuries or even millennia. This suggests that generations will succeed each other during the journey.

Technically, this is possible.

However, the challenges facing the mission are so numerous and complex that it can take decades to prepare.

“From the point of view of physics, there are no fundamental obstacles. There are many nuances, but this is not a violation of the fundamental laws of physics, ”said Andreas Hein, Executive Director of Initiative for Interstellar Studies.

No problem.

The main problem is the lack of experience being far beyond the Earth for such a period of time.

Even a flight to Mars, which will last about 6-8 months, raises a lot of questions.

Proxima Centauri b

There is no reliable protection against merciless radiation yet. Medical problems caused by a prolonged stay in space are still poorly understood. Other than that, there is no guarantee that Proxima Centauri b is indeed liveable.

Can you imagine what a setup would be if people born on a spaceship for one purpose would come to a planet absolutely unsuitable for settlement …

However, the authors of the project do not plan to curtail the program and continue to work actively in this direction.

Continue Reading

Space

European Space Agency to launch space waste collector

A four-armed robotic junk collector will be launched into space by the European Space Agency in what it says will be the first mission to remove an item of debris from orbit.

European Space Agency to launch space waste collector

The ClearSpace-1 mission, scheduled for launch in 2025, will cost €120m and will grab a single piece of junk. But the agency hopes the mission will pave the way for a wide-reaching clear-up operation, with Esa’s director general calling for new rules that would compel those who launch satellites to take responsibility for removing them from orbit once they are retired from use.

Jan Wörner, CEO of ESA, said:

Imagine how dangerous sailing the high seas would be if all the ships ever lost in history were still drifting on top of the water. That is the current situation in orbit, and it cannot be allowed to continue.

In the past 60 years, thousands of tonnes of junk has accumulated around the Earth, including old rocket parts, about 3,500 defunct satellites and an estimated 750,000 smaller fragments, some from collisions between larger bits of junk. The fragments are typically circulating with a velocity of 20,000km/h (12,500mph).

Unless a clear-up operation is mounted, the chances of collisions will escalate as thousands more satellites are put into orbit.

Funding for the mission was agreed at Space19+, ESA’s misterial council, which took place in Seville, Spain, at the end of November. The mission will be run by a consortium led by a Swiss startup called Clearspace.

The target for ClearSpace-1 is a piece of junk called Vespa, which was left in an orbit around 800km above the Earth by ESA’s Vega launcher in 2013. Vespa weighs 100kg – around the size of a small satellite – and was selected because it has a simple shape and sturdy construction, which make it unlikely to fragment when it is grabbed.

The “chaser” ClearSpace space probe will be launched into the target orbit where it will track down Vespa, grab it using a quartet of robotic arms and drag it out of orbit, with Vespa and the chaser both burning up in the atmosphere on the way down to Earth.

A future ambition is to create a clear-up robot that could eject junk into the atmosphere, before continuing to capture and de-orbit other pieces of junk.

Source

Continue Reading

Recent Comments

Trending