The boards will consist of the “Chernobyl” of the fungus.

American scientists have proposed to consider the option of protection devices and future settlements on Mars from cosmic radiation with the help of microgramma who lives by absorbing dangerous to humans, writes liga.net.

The main threat to the health of astronauts in deep space is radiation. The average annual equivalent dose of the human being on Earth is about 6.2 mSv, while on the International space station – 144 mSv. For the year in a potential three-year mission to Mars astronaut will receive up to 400 mSv, mostly from cosmic radiation, and not local sources of radiation.

The authors stress that due to the complex nature of space radiation, “probably there is no universal solution to this problem,” which is compounded by the limitation of mass. They believe that biotechnology in this area is unique advantages: suitability for use of resources in place, self healing and adaptability.

They recalled that some insects, bacteria and fungi thrive in conditions of high radiation background. For example, the fungus which in 1991 discovered in the water of the cooling pond of the Chernobyl NPP.

To obtain the life energy these microorganisms use radiosintez. Similar to how plants do it with chlorophyll, Cladosporium sphaerospermum uses melanin to convert gamma radiation into chemical energy. The ability of this species to weaken radiation was studied on the ISS for 30 days according to the program of finding solutions “under Mars”. The level of radicai under the 1.7 mm layer of mushrooms was 2.17±0.35% lower than without it, with the potential to increase the rate to 5.04%.

“A layer of this fungus with a thickness of ~21 cm would largely negate the annual equivalent radiation dose from the environment on the surface of Mars. To achieve the same would require a mixture of melanin and the local regolith thickness 9 cm,” the researchers write.


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