X-Message-Number: 16828
From: "Trygve Bauge" <>

References: <> 
<005801c102f9$ec5e4d80$> <000f01c102ff$eef90de0$>
Subject: Re: Whether comets can be used to transport DNA and organic chemicals.
Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2001 21:27:04 +0200

 "John de Rivaz" <> wrote:

>  "Trygve Bauge" <> wrote:
> > Maybe comets could be seeded with genetic material that we want to
> > around the universe?
> I think it was Mike Darwin who answered this one in respect of a group
> planned to launch a probe out of the solar system containing DNA from
> who had paid about $50 for the privilege.
> He said that the radiation in space would soon garble any DNA sent out
> way, unless well shielded. the amount of shielding required would produced
> too heavy a ship to get off the ground.

Comets are quite big, some seems to consist of ice etc. some of which melts
and forms the sunlight reflecting tale. They might have enough ice or mass
to shield biological material.
When it comes to gamma radiation 3.3 inches of dirt cuts radiation in half,
and 6.6 inches cuts it to 1/4 .... and about 3 feet of dirt cuts radiation
to 1/1000 while six feet of dirt cuts radiation to 1 millionth of what it is
at the surface. For concrete 2.2 inches cuts radiation in half ....etc....
Water has a similar shielding effect, though I don't have the exact figures.
The exact properties of ice and comets I don't know but they certainly would
provide the few feets of shielding that is needed.

Man made probes have already been attempted landed on comets.

It is just a question of time before someone volunteers to be launced onto a
comet on the way away from the sun, to live out one's years on the comet,
reporting back to earth
until dying on the comet. With the appropriate space ship and enough
supplies one could possibly live and breed until the comet comes back years
or even centuries later,
Though some comets might never come back, and could possibly be used to get
a flying start for longer space travels. e.g. so that the probe is launced
from the comet at the latter's
fartherest distance from the earth, and then continues further on its own.


Trygve Bauge

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