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Electrostatic Radiation Shielding

24 Oct 2009, 00:23 UTC
Electrostatic Radiation Shielding
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Clearly carrying heavy shielding to protect astronauts from radiation in space is expensive. If you havent’ been reading my space radiation series as I’ve been posting, then you can look over the last several of my postings about space radiation to see some of the problems. So, some other strategy may be the way to go to shield against radiation. One idea that I ran across a while ago was electrostatic shielding. Space.com did a good article on that a few years ago.

The basic idea is that like electric charges repel. So, an object with a very large positive charge would repel incoming positively charged particles, like protons. The idea sounds really good at first glance. However, as with many ideas, further study shows that there are some considerable difficulties that need to be worked out before it is truly a viable shield. Working out those difficulties, though, means a lot of time, effort, and hours from scientists and engineers. They need to be paid a salary. It also means experimentation, building simulations, computing, etc. All that requires money, too. Unfortunately, I think that far too little money is being spent at this time on working out all of ...

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