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GCR Simulator Reference Field and a Spectral Approach for Laboratory SimulationThe galactic cosmic ray (GCR) simulator at the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) is intended to deliver the broad spectrum of particles and energies encountered in deep space to biological targets in a controlled laboratory setting. In this work, certain aspects of simulating the GCR environment in the laboratory are discussed. Reference field specification and beam selection strategies at NSRL are the main focus, but the analysis presented herein may be modified for other facilities. First, comparisons are made between direct simulation of the external, free space GCR field and simulation of the induced tissue field behind shielding. It is found that upper energy constraints at NSRL limit the ability to simulate the external, free space field directly (i.e. shielding placed in the beam line in front of a biological target and exposed to a free space spectrum). Second, variation in the induced tissue field associated with shielding configuration and solar activity is addressed. It is found that the observed variation is likely within the uncertainty associated with representing any GCR reference field with discrete ion beams in the laboratory, given current facility constraints. A single reference field for deep space missions is subsequently identified. Third, an approach for selecting beams at NSRL to simulate the designated reference field is presented. Drawbacks of the proposed methodology are discussed and weighed against alternative simulation strategies. The neutron component and track structure characteristics of the simulated field are discussed in this context.
Document ID
Document Type
Technical Publication (TP)
Slaba, Tony C.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Blattnig, Steve R.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Norbury, John W.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Rusek, Adam
(Brookhaven National Lab. Upton, NY, United States)
La Tessa, Chiara
(Brookhaven National Lab. Upton, NY, United States)
Walker, Steven A.
(Old Dominion Univ. Norfolk, VA, United States)
Date Acquired
March 27, 2015
Publication Date
March 1, 2015
Subject Category
Space Radiation
Aerospace Medicine
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 651549.02.07.10
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.

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