ARMAS App reports aerospace radiation for crew and passengers
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Space Environment Technologies launched its ARMAS iOS App v1.4 via the Apple store to provide real-time monitoring for managing radiation risks to commercial aviation and space transportation crew and passengers. The ARMAS App improves aviation and commercial aerospace safety for crew and the flying public by providing direct monitoring, in real-time, of the radiation environment above 8km (26,000ft) that comes from space weather. SET’s Flight Module 7 (FM7) is directly paired with and managed by the app.
The Automated Radiation Measurements for Aerospace Safety (ARMAS) program was developed by a team led by Principal Investigator Dr. W. Kent Tobiska of Space Environment Technologies. ARMAS uses an innovative approach with dosimeter sensors linked to ground-based servers that result in advanced space radiation research and improved aviation and space-flight safety.
Atmospheric ionizing radiation is the primary source of human exposure at commercial aircraft altitudes. High linear energy transfer (LET) radiation directly breaks up DNA and this process can lead to adverse health effects including increased risk of cancer. It has been noted that this may be an important cause in limiting the careers of aircrew and may also cause similar long-term effects in passengers, especially the frequent flyer population.
The radiation sources can be from galactic cosmic rays, solar energetic particles, or even Van Allen radiation belt energetic particles. These sources cause secondary radiation when they impact atmospheric molecules and vehicle materials. It is this secondary radiation environment that can have adverse effects on human tissue and aerospace electronics. ARMAS seeks to help manage these radiation hazards by providing timely and accurate information.
The ARMAS Flight Module 7 (FM7) that pairs with this app is a major innovative step for obtaining the highest quality dose and dose rates in aircraft and suborbital vehicles from all significant sources of radiation, including heavy ions, alphas, protons, neutrons, electrons, and gamma-rays. The FM7 unit measures the dose in 10-second integrations, then provides that information via Bluetooth to the ARMAS iOS App where the raw data is averaged into 1-minute bins and reported in Absorbed Dose in tissue, Dose Equivalent, Ambient Dose Equivalent and Absorbed Dose in silicon.
The ARMAS iOS App saves the user’s accumulated dose record and effective dose rate processing. By tapping the “Update Dose Profile” button in the Flight window, a user accomplishes two things: i) saves his or her accumulated dose for that flight to the app’s data log of accumulated dose for all recorded flights that are not shared with other devices or servers and ii) uploads the generic flight information to the ARMAS server for processing into effective dose rates. The generic flight data upload is added to a global database used for scientific evaluation of ARMAS flight data that helps improve air safety.