January 1, 2010.
It has been observed that Astronauts in prolonged Zero-g space flight have issues with cardiovascular deconditioning during transition into 1-g and may experience fainting (orthostatic hypotension). High priority has been given to maintaining Astronaut health, safety, and performance during long duration missions. The purpose of this study is to simultaneously collect echocardiographic data and impedance cardiographic data from test participants in both 1-g and Lunar-g (1/6g) conditions during parabolic flight in a Zero-G aircraft. This data will be used to develop countermeasures to mitigate risks to neurobehavioral functions and to enhance the health, performance, and safety of crews during extended duration spaceflight. It is expected that from the data collected, real-time mathematical models will be created which will be capable of extrapolating relevant cardiovascular dynamics, such as stroke volume, cardiac output, cardiac index, and ventricular ejection time, from impedance cardiography measurements. The real time display of these measurements can help crew members understand what is happening to their body and, through Autogenic Feedback Training Exercise (AFTE), be able to control their cardiac output, helping their transition from Zero-g to planetary-g.
NASA Ames Research Center (ARC)