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Why A Manned Mars Mission May Be Deadly
By Ted Twietmeyer
Everyone in the space community is excited about going to Mars. But NASA may be ignoring one very
obvious, important issue for astronaut health: Mars' dust damages humans and perhaps deadly. Compare Mars to the Moon:
Everyone in the space community is excited about going to Mars. But NASA may be ignoring one very obvious, important issue for astronaut health: Mars' dust damages humans and perhaps deadly.
Compare Mars to the Moon:
Moon dust was never examined under a microscope until the Apollo missions brought it home on space suits. Micrometeorites hitting the Moon have heat-fused dust into razor-sharp, microscopic glass particles. If inhaled lunar dust can enter the bloodstream through the lungs. This is far smaller than asbestos dust which lodges in the lungs. Moon dust has ground up Apollo space suit leg and arm joints and penetrated three layers of Kevlar in space suits. (Source - NASA scientists and astronauts)
MORE PROOF MOON DUST IS VOLATILE
Although Moon materials have been isolated in vacuum-packed bottles, it is now unusable for detailed chemical or mechanical analysis- the gritty particles deteriorated the knife-edge indium seals of the vacuum bottles; air has slowly leaked in. Every sample brought back from the Moon has been contaminated by Earth's air and humidity. The dust has acquired a patina of rust, and, as a result of bonding with terrestrial water and oxygen molecules, its chemical reactivity is long gone. The chemical and electrostatic properties of the soil no longer match what future astronauts will encounter on the Moon. (Source - Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_soil#Properties )
M ARS DUST PARTICLES TOO SMALL TO OPTICALLY IMAGE ON MARS ROVER
A microscopic imager has been sent to Mars on a rover. Resolution is 31 microns per pixel (0.001 inch
or 0.031 millimeter per pixel). Able to resolve 0.004-inch (0.1 millimeter) objects/features.
Clearly the imager sent to Mars cannot clearly resolve nano-size dust particles, like particles present everywhere on the Moon. Mars dust particles are far smaller than what this imager can detect.
ATOMIC FORCE MICROSCOPE ON MARS SCANS ONE MICRON SIZE PARTICLES
NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander has taken the first-ever image of a single particle of Mars' ubiquitous dust, using an atomic force microscope. The atomic force microscope maps the shape of particles in three dimensions and creates images like this one below:
Astronauts to inhale billions of 1 micron or smaller Mars perchlorate dust
NASA KNOWS PERCHLORATES ARE PRESENT ON MARS
Perchlorates are colorless salts that have no odor. Perchlorates are very reactive chemicals that are used
mainly in explosives, fireworks, and rocket motors. The solid booster rocket of the space shuttle was
almost 70% ammonium perchlorate. Perchlorates are also used for making other chemicals.
There is a grave impact on human health from inhaling both micron-size dust and perchlorates on Mars, NASA should send a custom made robot laboratory to Mars FIRST to better analyze dust toxicity and hazards. Perhaps it already has the data, and is keeping it from the press and astronauts.
Before a manned Mars mission, NASA plans to send another mission first to Mars first - an automatic rocket fuel refinery. The refining plant will produce sufficient perchlorate rocket fuel for a manned
Mars mission to return to Earth according to NASA. If NASA is smart, due to the life-critical nature of
having sufficient return-to-earth fuel they will send two refineries to Mars in case one malfunctions.
Mars' surface has a large amount of perchlorate everywhere in the soil. What happens when Mars' dust on astronaut's suits is regularly breathed in? What if the dust is both corrosive and abrasive, like Moon dust is? It would destroy joints in space suits like it did to Apollo space suits, and it might disable the rocket fuel refinery(s).
Apollo 11 astronauts were the first men to walk on the Moon. When they came back inside the Lunar Lander and removed their helmets, they had no alternative but to breathe in Lunar dust. They stated "Moon dust smells just like gunpowder." Apollo astronauts were on the Moon only one to two days before lifting off and re-joining the orbiting Command Module and jettisoning the Lander.
Is it healthy for astronauts to breathe in perchlorate dust day after day, week after week?
Again, everyone should demand that a full investigation is made into the health effects of Mars surface dust on human beings BEFORE sending humans there.
The effects of perchlorate and razor-sharp microscopic fragments on humans is well known. While
perchlorate is used in explosives and many other materials made on Earth, we don't normally breathe it
It is already well known perchlorate can damage the thyroid gland, other parts of the body and is a
suspected carcinogen by the EPA. Any doctor will tell you the thyroid gland controls many bodily
The nearest medical help to mitigate organ damage or cancer is 199.5 MILLION miles away on Earth.
There is no question that the surface of Mars presents several serious hazards to human health. It is highly likely that anyone will be planting crops there, which science fiction writers like to imagine.