An international team of scientists has determined the optimal time for humans to fly to Mars. An article describing the study was published in the journal Space Weather.
During a long space flight, people can be affected by cosmic radiation, since outside of Earth's orbit, they will not be protected by the Earth's magnetic field. Astronauts can develop stomach diseases, cancer, and severe brain damage leading to reduced intelligence.
A thick layer of material can be protected from the flow of cosmic particles, but this will lead to an increase in the mass of the spacecraft at the expense of the payload or fuel. Instead, Mikhail Dobyndé from the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology and his colleagues suggest choosing the right time for the expedition.
Cosmic particles are solar and galactic. The authors of the work write: “During the active Sun, the most dangerous high-energy particles that can make the ship itself radioactive will be reflected by solar radiation. From it, in turn, it will be easier to make a shield. " Based on this, the optimal period for the flight will come in the mid-2030s, when the peak of solar activity and the favorable relative position of the Earth and Mars coincide. At the same time, from a safety point of view, it is ideal that the round trip should not last more than four years.