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As Mars-bound rockets are still being tested, NASA, along with the space agencies of other countries,  have continued to evaluate risks of manned missions to the Red Planet, including radiation exposure and the effects of microgravity,  the risks of which we don’t yet fully understand, although  it’s a slam dunk that when left untreated they can adversely affect health.  To be sure, harmful radiation from galactic cosmic rays and solar energetic particles can easily penetrate typical shielding. With regard to gravity, we don’t know precisely how much gravity is needed to avoid the potential problem of too little. However, of the two planets, Mars and the Earth, the latter has  the strongest gravity by far—66 percent to be exact—and six times stronger than the Moon. Mars also has readily available resources such as water and its roughly 24-hour day/night cycle is closer to the Earth’s than that of any other planet or moon.  The risk from radiation is visualized more easily when compared to other risks.
The world’s space agencies have put in place radiation exposure limits for astronauts over their careers.  At Mars, the risk can be managed by monitoring each crew member’s radiation exposure and limiting the surface exploration time of those most at risk. The limits depend on the sex and the age of the astronaut, and are designed to keep the risk of radiation-induced fatal cancer below 3 percent. Based on a report by the National Council on Radiation Protections,  for females under 30, the threat of radiation exposure virtually exceeds the maximum allowable for their lifetime.
Comparing the Risks of Radiation on Mars
Current Exposure Limits, Depending on Age
Lines show resulting exposure for crew members arriving on Mars at age 35 and spending an average of two hours per day outside a habitat built on the planet.
But in the end, why are we even considering such a journey? In a word: life.  To go there to see if we can find evidence of life, a second genesis, and if we don’t find it, we want to establish new life on Mars— our own. But here is the thing: for the first time in history a species on Earth has the knowledge and technology to ensure its own survival on new worlds. For many enthusiasts it is an escape, a chance for a new start and the challenge of a lifetime. This is the broad-brush view of why we need to go to Mars, but on a more personal level, what is it that drives people to want to go to such places, so far away, so hostile to life? 
4. The writer wants to develop the paragraph with evidence about the risk to health posed by radiation. Which choice best accomplishes this goal?
6. For the sake of paragraph cohesion, what is the best thing to do with this sentence?
8. Which choice completes the sentence with accurate data drawn from the graph?
11. The writer wants to conclude the passage by answering the question with a sentence that emphasizes the romantic lure of space travel and settling on Mars in spite of the risks involved. Which choice would best accomplish that goal?
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