human journey to Mars, at first
glance, offers an inexhaustible amount of complexities. To bring a mission to
the Red Planet from fiction to fact, NASA’s Human Research Program has organized some of the hazards
astronauts will encounter on a continual basis into five classifications.
A spacecraft is not only a home,
it’s also a machine. NASA understands that the ecosystem inside a vehicle plays
a big role in everyday astronaut life.
Important habitability factors
include temperature, pressure, lighting, noise, and quantity of space. It’s
essential that astronauts are getting the requisite food, sleep and exercise
needed to stay healthy and happy. The space environment introduces challenges
not faced on Earth.
Technology, as often is the case
with out-of-this-world exploration, comes to the rescue! Technology plays a big
role in creating a habitable home in a harsh environment and monitoring some of
the environmental conditions.
Astronauts are also asked to
provide feedback about their living environment, including physical impressions
and sensations so that the evolution of spacecraft can continue addressing the
needs of humans in space.
Exploration to the Moon and Mars will expose astronauts to five
known hazards of spaceflight, including hostile and closed environments, like
the closed environment of the vehicle itself. To learn more, and find out what
NASA’s Human Research Program is doing to protect humans in
space, check out the “Hazards of Human Spaceflight" website.
Or, check out this week’s episode of “Houston
We Have a Podcast,” in which host Gary Jordan
further dives into the threat of hostile and closed environments with Brian
Crucian, NASA immunologist at the Johnson Space Center.
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