Task Development of Countermeasures to Aid Functional Egress from the Crew Exploration Vehicle Following Long-Duration Spaceflight (Mulavara) (Completed)
Last Published:  07/31/19 10:05:33 AM (Central)
Short Title: CM Egress
Responsible HRP Element: Human Health Countermeasures
Collaborating Org(s):
National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI)
Other:
Funding Status: Completed - Task completed and produced a deliverable
Procurement Mechanism(s):
Solicited
Aims:

Introduction

Crew member adapted to the microgravity state may need to egress the landing vehicle within a few minutes for safety and operational reasons in various sea state conditions following a water landing. Exposure to even low motion frequencies (0.2-2.0 Hz) coupled with the varying sea state conditions can cause performance deficits in tasks critical to emergency egress activities. Crewmembers returning to Earth by means of a water landing following long-duration space flight will face two significant challenges: microgravity induced disturbances in sensorimotor function coupled with sensorimotor deficits produced by exposure to various sea states.   

Stochastic resonance (SR) is a mechanism whereby noise can assist and hence enhance the response of neural systems to relevant, sub-threshold sensory signals. Detection of time-critical sub-threshold sensory signals by the use of SR mechanisms may play a crucial role in leading to faster recovery of function during their re-adaptation to Earth G.

Specific Aims

The Specific Aims of this study are: 1) Investigate performance of motor and visual tasks during varying vehicle motion, 2) Develop a countermeasure based on sub-threshold stochastic stimulation of the vestibular system to enhance sensorimotor capabilities during adaptive change.

Methods

Subjects will participate in experiments that evaluate gross/fine motor control tasks and dynamic visual acuity reaction time under simulated motions using a six-degrees of freedom motion platform at wave frequencies and sea state magnitudes. Further, studies evaluating efficacy of imperceptible stochastic noise electrical stimulation of the vestibular system on postural and manual control during body motion and perception of whole-body orientation will be implemented. 

Expected result(s)

It is expected that the performance of motor and visual tasks will degrade during varying vehicle motion.  The use of stochastic resonance mechanisms will enhance the acquisition of new strategic abilities and enhance performance during sensorimotor disturbances.

How task will fill or partially fill the gap

This task will fill the gap by correlating performance changes to simulated varying low frequency vehicular motions for different sea states and the countermeasure should ensure rapid restoration of functional egress capabilities.
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