Task Ensuring Human-Automation/Robotic Integration Safety Standards in Spaceflight
Last Published:  07/31/19 10:05:33 AM (Central)
Short Title: Ensuring Crew Safety
Responsible HRP Element: Human Factors and Behavioral Performance
Collaborating Org(s):
Funding Status: Planned-Funded - Task expected to be within budget
Procurement Mechanism(s):

Future human spaceflight missions will require a higher degree of automation, both for onboard systems and ground support. NASA’s standards must consider the appropriate analyses that will ensure crew health and avoid injury when humans operate robots in close-proximity, when sharing the same living-working environment and when collaborating to complete complex tasks in extreme environments (like during a planetary spacewalk). NASA standards must also delineate minimum communication requirements between human and robotic agents under the different expected operational circumstances. NASA needs methods and tools to verify that HARI safety standards are met for advanced automation and robotic systems that are co-existing or interfacing with crew.


  1. Identify and/or develop safety metrics for human-automation and human-robotic verification. Research and empirically validate said metrics.

  2. Develop integrated tool that will address both human-automation and human-robotic verification. Tool must verify that human-automation systems will prove to be robust to humans-in-the-loop, especially in off-nominal conditions, as well as verify that human-robotic systems will prove to be safe for crew to use in extreme environments. 

  3. Validate and evaluate these methods and tools in a space operations application (e.g., ground analog, ground-side system operations with Flight Operations Directorate (FOD), complex human-robotic system like the robotic arm or Robonaut, or systems aboard International Space Station (ISS)).


    This research task will close HARI-01 gap as it will have developed and validated methods and tools for verifying human-automation/robotic function allocation and team composition in the context of crew safety. This research task will contribute to HARI-03 gap as it will establish a method for quantifying performance and ensuring crew safety in space mission operations.