Our journalist friends from France briefly explain why solar and cosmic radiation make manned space travel to Mars or beyond not feasible — unless you want to die quickly.

“A theorised solution would be to generate a huge magnetic or electrostatic shield around the ship to repel the particles, although the energy expenditure would be huge and the solution itself may pose hazards to health.

“Cost alone is likely to make these ideas unfeasible, leaving mission deciders with the nightmarish task of determining what is an acceptable level of risk for the men and women who will go to Mars.”

Let’s hope sobering stories like this put to death the childish, escapist notion that we can willfully destroy the only known living planet in the Universe because we can always go somewhere else.

It is axiomatic that if we could somehow make Mars livable, we should be able to keep the Earth livable. The vice versa is axiomatic as well.

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