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NOSM to study cosmic radiation for the Canadian Space Agency

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A partnership between Sudbury’s NOSM University and SNOLAB has researchers looking into the effects of space cosmic radiation.

A $150,000 grant from the Canadian Space Agency will fund research into how living cells can respond and adapt to the harsh radiation environment in outer space over two years.

They are also collaborating with the NASA’s Ames Research Center which is conducting an experiment in which bakers yeast samples will travel 40 million kilometres into deep space onboard the Artemis Mission while researchers in Sudbury are utilizing the same yeast in the SNOLAB which is shielded from cosmic radiation.

“We got interested in running an experiment down there to look at what are the biological effects of well; the removal of natural background radiation so ionizing radiation is something that we’re exposed to on a daily basis from a combination of different sources from cosmic radiation to different isotopes in the ground and in the rock and so by going down to SNOLAB we can answer the question of what happens to different living systems when we remove this natural source of radiation,” Christopher Thome of NOSM University explained to CTV News.

Thome said his team hopes to have publications coming out in the next few months and that this is just the beginning. Depending on the findings, he anticipates there will be more experiments conducted in Sudbury in the years to come.

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