In news which could be a boon for the fledging inflatable Moon habitat tent podule industry, a group of textiles students from North Carolina say they have invented a radiation-proof, solar power generating fabric ideal for lunar camping. As regular Reg readers will be well aware, most of the universe is too radioactive for …
they get to trust a bunch of stoner students that they wont all turn into mutants from radiation
so we can get rid of all that concrete shielding in nuclear power plants and replace it with 'radiation-proof' textile. sure
Depends what type of radiation you have
Alpha - Can be stoped by paper
Beta - Can be stopped by aluminium.
Gamma- Can be stopped by Lead
Neutron - Can be stopped by hydrogen
If NASA don't buy it.
I see a market in novelty hats made out of it for the wingnut brigade.
Tinfoil's just so last millenium.
Win your Darwin award here
If this material were lead it were 1cm thick incomming gamma radiation would be reduced by 50%.
Perhaps they should be invited to wear a cloak of this material inside a nuclear reactor (along with the gullible journalists), at least they could get a Darwin award for their troubles.
What's the betting
that it cuts down Alpha and Beta radiation, as well as absorbing EM radiation in roughly the 1500nm to 300nm band?
And do they say it's radiation-proof or radiation-resistant/radiation-tolerant?
Oh, and in the linked article it describes it as a "blanket". Blankets can get pretty thick!
Saying that, if they were physics students there wouldn't be anywhere near the level of derision these guys are being subjected to.
A bit short of hard meat
Can anyone supply a transfer function for this material over the bandwidth x-rays to radio-waves? Otherwise I might more usefully see what the Daily F'ail is radiating today.
If it's a magnetosphere substitute...
I see people kvetching about the difficulty of blocking gammas and neutrons, but the article refers to "the planet's protective magnetosphere," which of course only affects charged particles: alpha, beta, stray protons, and the like. Gee, do we think a solar storm might have a high proton content?
(Putting on my silly hat, perhaps it's time to revisit Nedddie Seagoon's atom-proof dustbin.)
Bloody students. Get a job.
Or at least do some proper research, like 'Students who drink more vomit more'.
Draws a diagram showing two thin layers of material bonded together.
Draws a line from one layer to a text box that says 'outer layer: solar cells'
Draws a line from the other layer to a text box saying 'inner layer: radiation deflector/absorber'
Runs over to the patent office with my invention - woohoo!
(Gets accused of reductionist cynicism but I'm used to that)
So these guys' extensive insight into textiles gives them expertise in the absorption characteristics of ionising radiation does it.? Amazing what they teach them these days - perhaps they are working on the lead-lined underpants to protect where most male students keep their brains.
Blocking out the vast majority of space radiation, as already said, is surprisingly easy. A few millimeters of a hydrocarbon based artificial fiber will soak up huge amounts of protons and significant amounts of neutrons.
In fact, including metal in the design makes matters worse because when a charged particle strikes a metal surface at sufficiently high energies, it causes an X-ray photon to be emitted by the metal.
The easy solution is to simply surround yourself with water, which is fairly dense, contains a high degree of hydrogen by mass and you've got the bonus of wanting plenty of water to drink and show with anyways.
Had me doing a double-take and checking the calendar for April 1st.
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