Bulgarian Device to Measure Radiation Exposure on International Space Station
February 16 (BTA) - The device Liulin-SET developed by the Institute of Space Research and Technologies with the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (BAS) has underwent successful test runs and is set to fly out to the International Space Station on February 19, BAS said in a press release Wednesday.
The device was developed on a commission of the California-based Space Environment Technology, Pacific Palisades, company, and will be part of the Automated Radiation Measurements for Aerospace Safety (ARMAS) module.
The Bulgarian team that developed the device was headed by Prof. Tsvetan Dachev. Its members included researchers Assoc. Prof. Mityo Mitev, Borislav Tomov, Yurii Matviichouk, and Plamen Dimitrov, of the Solar Earth Physics Unit. This is the 23rd device developed by the unit to be sent to work in space.
ARMAS and Liulin-SET will measure simultaneously the space radiation exposure in the Japanese experimental module part of the Japanese section of the International Space Station. After a period from six to 12 months, ARMAS and the Bulgarian device will be returned to Earth to analyse the collected data. The space radiation exposure is a key parameter for the health of the astronauts on board the ISS.
The launch of ARMAS is scheduled to take place on February 19 with the Antares rocket of Northrop Grumman from the Virginia Commercial Space Flight Authority. The launch will be streamed live on NASA's TV, http://www.nasa.gov/nasatv, and also on https://www.nasa.gov/wallops/2022/feature/
Two more devices developed in BAS's Solar Earth Physics Unit are expected to be launched in space by the end of the year. The first one, Liulin-ML, is to fly out to Mars in September. The device is expected to land on Mars in March 2023. There it will join another Bulgarian device, Liulin-MO, which is orbiting Mars, to conduct research not done by any other country so far.
The other Bulgarian device to be launched in 2022 is called Liulin-CNR-VG and will be used by an Italian space research mission carried out at altitude of up to 86 km on board of one of the new Virgin Galactic spaceplanes.