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Lesson 8 Archive Notes: May 19, 2010

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Space Show Classroom Lesson 8:  Human Factors, Part Two

 Tuesday, May 18, 2010

 Archive Notes and Program Information

 The Space Show Classroom Lesson 8 can be downloaded or heard at:


Guests:  CLASSROOM:  Dr. Jim Logan, Dr. John Jurist.  Topics:  Lesson 8, Human Factors Part Two.  Drs. Logan and Jurist returned for this Classroom program which focused on long duration human spaceflight.  As we started our first segment, I asked our guests what constituted long duration spaceflight. The working definition centered around spaceflight more than six months to a year in duration and any human spaceflight going beyond LEO.  Both our guests said there were no show stoppers regarding Life Science in short term space flight but that it was very different in the long duration flight with the two major issues being radiation and microgravity effects, specifically bone issues.  During this first segment, we focused on the bone loss issues.  Our discussion with Dr. Logan and Dr. Jurist was comprehensive and detailed, explaining the problems, the facts about exercise (you will probably be surprised at what you hear on this topic), and counter measures such as artificial gravity, centrifuges, bisphosphonate usage, and more.  Because of the bone loss issues, Dr. Logan said that some destinations in space would probably be classified as a civilization destination while others would be typed as a sortie destination.  We talked about the lack of knowledge for the gravity prescription and what that really means for human spaceflight.  In discussing artificial gravity which was typed as pseudo gravity by our guests, we learned that it was not the same as natural gravity on Earth and the lack of knowledge about it was a problem.  You will certainly want to hear this comprehensive discussion on this and the other topics in this segment.  Our second segment focused on space radiation issues.  The two major types of radiation were identified as cosmic rays and the solar wind.  Dr. Logan gave us some interesting facts for comparison in shielding on Earth versus shielding in a spacecraft, a space habitat, and a spacesuit.  You will want to pay particular attention to the percentages Dr. Logan provided as this information was used throughout this segment.  Our guests brought up the solar cycle, solar modulation from all directions, the LRO mission and its data findings, and the geometric issue for radiation shielding.  We also talked about magnetic shielding and noted that when the spacecraft size decreases, the radiation field needed to deflect particles increases.  Don’t miss this discussion and explanation.  Dr. Rowe asked about radiation and the early Apollo missions.  Joe asked as question about the atmospheric particles and could they be used for shielding.  Don’t miss the answer to these questions.  Much of our discussion centered on possible mitigation techniques.  We went over many of those suggested but Dr. Logan suggested that the ultimate answer would not be in the form of a silver bullet but more likely a multiple faceted solution, a type of sandwich of solutions mixed together.  Near the end of the program, our guests responded to a medical treatment question for a long duration spaceflight crew member with a heart attack.  Pharmaceutical usage in space was talked about and our guests brought up the fact that humans were the weak link in the spaceflight chain.  Fly By Wire was used as an example.  Please remember to visit The Space Show Classroom Blog at https://spaceshowclassroom.wordpress.com.  Post all your comments and questions there.  Any comments or questions sent to me will be posted to the blog under the name of the sender. 


Lesson 7 Archive Notes: May 17, 2010

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Space Show Classroom Lesson 7:  Human Factors, Part One

 Sunday, May 16, 2010

 Archive Notes and Program Information

 The Space Show Classroom Lesson 7 can be downloaded or heard at:


Guests:  CLASSROOM:  Dr. Jim Logan, Dr. John Jurist.  Topics:  Lesson 7, Human Factors Part 1.  This program was Lesson 7 and the first part of a two part series on human factors for space travel.  Please visit The Space Show Classroom blog for presentation material (its copyrighted) and post all comments and questions for the guests on the blog at https://spaceshowclassroom.wordpress.com.  In the first segment of the program, our guests summarized the major human factors and medical issues for suborbital and very short term spaceflight.  As Dr. Logan noted, this is the 49th year of human spaceflight, about 500 people have flown and there have been about 260 space missions.  This comes to an 85 person/year of spaceflight experience.  He said there were no real surprises or show stoppers for this category of spaceflight.  We addressed bone loss issues and talked about G-loading positions for spaceflight participants to minimize acceleration stresses.  We compared these positions to those flying in a high performance fighter jet.  Centrifuge training was discussed in detail and why its so important to fly the suborbital or spaceflight profiles that one intends to take.  We talked about cardiac dysrhythmia, medical qualifications, beta blockers, and corrective steps if medical conditions were found to exist in someone that wants to fly in space.  Our guests talked about the disqualification process and explained it to us.  Listen carefully as it was not what I thought would be and some of you may also be surprised by what our guests said about potentially adverse medical conditions.  This is an important discussion so don’t miss it.  Floating around in the space vehicle was also brought up and discussed as a potential risk factor.  We had a question from Mel for Dr. Logan asking him about the tricks to avoid getting air sick if one has the opportunity to fly in a high performance military jet with a downright “evil” pilot.  You will enjoy this discussion!  During this segment, we spent more time talking about cardiac issues and the usage of pharmaceuticals in space.  One drug combination Dr. Logan talked about was ScopeDex for space sickness.  Our guests also suggested that spaceflight participants fly different zero g parabolas to experience weightlessness and see how they react to it and what “space sickness” is like.  Another issue that came up that would be critical for suborbital or any spaceflight was the ability for the person to do a rapid egress from the vehicle in case of an emergency.  Bone loss and osteoporosis were discussed in more detail during this segment.  A listener asked about flying children and here the age of consent came up as a problem/obstacle.  When asked about pregnant women in space, our guests said that all women of child bearing age must have a pregnancy test to fly.  You don’t want to miss this discussion.  Later in this segment, Jerry inquired about NASA space medical personnel and their ability to speak freely within NASA and outside the NASA line of command.  During the second segment, our guests repeated the three “commandments” for human spaceflight:   Do no danger to yourself, do no danger to the mission, and do no danger to others.  Dr. Jurist also talked about the risks of space diving explaining the major issues and risks associated with it.  I asked Dr. Logan about what to eat before a spaceflight.  Later in this segment, we talked about high altitude military jet ejections in the context of the earlier discussion on space diving.  Toward the end of the program, we talked about space radiation issues which were not said to be that significant for a very short suborbital flight.  While we discussed radiation in some detail, it will be a major focus of the second part of the human factors discussing in Lesson 8.  As we neared the end of the program, we talked more about the g-loading as well as a question from Bill on radiation issues for the ISS and a potential solar incident during a suborbital flight.  At the end, I asked each guest to prioritize the research as well as research dollars for suborbital and short duration human spaceflight.  The final show topic was in response to a question about obesity and spaceflight participants.  If you have questions or comments about this program or for Drs. Logan and Jurist, post them on The Space Show Classroom blog where this program is archived.  Visit https://spaceshowclassroom.wordpress.com.  Any emails sent me will be posted back on the blog under the sender’s name as we want the discussion to be part of the Classroom series.

Lesson 7 Presentation Materials May 15, 2010

Posted by drspaceshow in Uncategorized.
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Show Classroom Lesson 7:  Human Factors, Part  One

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Presentation Material from Dr. John Jurist, Co-Host of the Classroom series

Advanced Topics in Space Studies — Human Factors