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View Full Version : Keeping Mars Clean of Earth Bugs



Fraser
2006-Feb-04, 10:47 AM
SUMMARY: One concern engineers have when designing space missions is how to ensure our spacecraft don't bring along unexpected microorganisms when they reach a distant planet. There are strict international rules to avoid contamination, so engineers use several techniques to keep their spacecraft clean: sterilization through heat, vacuum, alcohol, irradiation with ultraviolet light and other kinds of radiation. Once they're done, engineers hope to have less than 300,000 microorganisms in the Beagle 2, due for launch in 2003. That sounds like a lot, but there are several billion wee beasties on even the cleanest kitchen floor.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/mars_clean_bugs.html)
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