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Space

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by

Simon George

on 12 November 2013

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Transcript of Space

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
Launch + Re-entry
Microgravity
Radiation
Habitation
Vacuum of Space
The Space Environment
University of Southampton
Simon George
Catching Hay Fever
on the Moon

(and other Curious Facts about Humans in Space)
The Human Body in Space
370 km
circular orbit
16 sunrises per day
Avg. speed
17,239 mph
73 m long, 109 m wide
Continuously manned since 2000

International Space Station
[ISS]

Space Adaptation Syndrome
The Space Environment
1: Launch and Re-Entry
During launch, the body is subjected to:
High acceleration (to escape Earth's gravitational pull)
Acoustic noise
Vibration, shockwaves
Space suits worn during launch (in case of depressurisation)
G-suits prevent blackout during re-entry
'Astronaut' = Male or female, of any nationality
Space
:
100 km above Earth

ISS
370 km
Low Earth Orbit

As of July 2012, there have been 528 astronauts in space, from 38 countries
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
bit.ly/spacefever
bit.ly/spacefever
Humans
in Space

The Space Environment
2: Habitation
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
Maintain range of acceptable body temperatures
Maintain atmospheric pressure
Breathing/respiration
Spacesuit
Pure O2 delivered
CO2 removed
Maintain 3-4psi pressure
Maintain comfortable temperature(cooling)
Debris & UV protection
Used for Extra-Vehicular
Activity [EVA]
Space Station
80% Nitrogen, 20% Oxygen air mix
Atmospheric pressure
20 deg temperature
Humidity control
Protection from debris, radiation and vacuum
'Shirtsleeve' environment
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
Spacecraft construction in cleanroom
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
Limited medical facilities
on ISS
Illness: serious risk to mission completion
Confined space: could transmit to rest of crew
Routine medical checks essential
Health in
Space
The Space Environment
2: Habitation
Moon Dust
Consistency of cocaine(*)
Smells like gunpowder
Particles are sharp & rough
Sticks to spacesuit, clogs joints
Brought into lunar capsule
(*) Apparently!
-> Silicosis
Planetary EVA
-> Lunar Hay
Fever
Jack Schmitt (Apollo 17)

Nasal passages swell
Irritates eyes, lungs
Inhaled into the lungs, embeds in alveolar sacs
Cannot be cleared by mucus/coughing
Lungs fill with blood
Dust and dirt can damage equipment and instruments

Microbe populations can increase significantly in microgravity
Fungus, mould and bacteria can develop on ISS unless controlled
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
What happens to the human body in space
(without a space suit)?
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
Myths busted:
You don't explode
Your blood won't boil
You won't freeze
(at least not straight away)
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
Swelling of tissues, heart and internal organs
Air pressure > 0.9 psi prevents boiling of blood at low temps.
Surface fluids
will
boil
, though
After 10s in vacuum
Containing effect of skin & circulatory system prevents 'explosion'
Air pressure at sea level: 15 pounds per square inch
Ebulism (formation of bubbles in blood)
Hypoxia (rapid deoxygenation of blood)
Anoxia (loss of O2 in tissue)
Hypocapnia (reduction of blood CO2 levels)
Sunburn (intense UV radiation)
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
What does happen though?
If you don't try to hold your breath, exposure to vacuum for 30 secs is unlikely to do permanent damage
Holding breath -> Lungs rupture internally;
Cannot be mended, death an inevitability
Loss of spacesuit/space station pressure: Survivable for up to 2 minutes
(As long as you have an oxygen supply)
The limits of human body in vacuum not really known
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
Localised heating
Decompression sickness
(“The Bends”)


Tissue swelling
Increase in body volume
Nitrogren Bubbles form in tissues and blood
Circulatory collapse, shock
Lose consciousness in 10-15s
(through deoxygenation of blood)
The Space Environment
3: Vacuum
Within 30 - 60 seconds of exposure
Circulatory failure, flaccid paralysis, lung collapse

Venous blood pressure > arterial blood pressure:


Evaporation of surface fluid
No effective circulation of blood
No oxygenation of tissues & organs
E.g. mouth cools to near-freezing temperatures
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
Myth busted:
There is still gravity!



Everything "falling" at same rate
Microgravity environment
Centrifugal force of orbit = Earth's gravitational pull
Low Earth
Orbit
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
Microgravity
: A variety of effects on the human body
Astronaut training
Equipment testing
Movie filming
Apollo 13 [1995]
Recreating weightlessness on the 'ground':
(we'll come to these later)
The Space Environment
4: Microgravity
Parabolic Flight
~ 20s of 'weightlessness'
Space Adaptation Syndrome
1: Locomotor System
The Space Environment
5: Radiation
Solar Particle Events [SPEs]
Arises from...
Galactic Cosmic Radiation [GCR]
Radiation belts (trapped particles)
The Space Environment
5: Radiation
Cumulative damage: increased risk with increased flight time
Protection usually comes from Earth’s magnetic field (blocks harmful particles)
Maximum permissible dose 3 Sievert/year
Solar Flare 100 Sv/hour
GCR 0.03 Sv/day
Radiation belts 3.00 Sv/day (max)
The Space Environment
5: Radiation
Solar Particle Events [SPEs]
Protons ejected from the Sun toward Earth (e.g. solar flares)
Associated with solar activity
High particle speed causes ionisation on impact
Cellular damage
Solar Flare
Ionisation damage to DNA
-> Shielding requirements
-> Scheduling of EVA
Removal of compressive force of gravity
Expansion of spinal column
Height growth of 5-8 cm
No need to maintain skeletal structure
Bone-forming cells reduce activity
Bone material depletes in load-bearing regions (hips, thighs, spine)
Bone tissue absorbed & not replaced
Risk of fracture on return to Earth gravity
Fracture repair impaired
Space Adaptation Syndrome
1: Locomotor System
Bone material depletes in load-bearing regions (hips, thighs, spine)
(Osteoporosis)
Bone material absorbed by the body
Calcium deposition
e.g. kidney stones, etc.
3.2% bone loss after 10d
1% per month afterwards
Cumulative, not 100% reversible upon return to Earth
Space Adaptation Syndrome
1: Locomotor System
Countermeasures
Cycles, treadmills, resistive devices
1-2 hours exercise per day
Space Adaptation Syndrome
1: Locomotor System
Countermeasures
Space Adaptation Syndrome
2: Fluid Redistribution
On Earth, fluids tend to 'pool' in the lower body

Removal of 'stabilising' force of
gravity ->
(exaggeration!)
Blood and internal fluids move to upper body

0.6 - 2.0 litres of fluid moves above the heart
Space Adaptation Syndrome
2: Fluid Redistribution
"Fluid Shift" ->
- Legs shrink by 1 litre
within 1 day


- Abdominal organs
move 'up'
- Blocked sinuses &
headaches


<- "Puffy Face" syndrome
"Bird Legs" syndrome
"Space Sniffles"
Space Adaptation Syndrome
2: Fluid Redistribution
Fluid pressure change across body
P(Brain) ~ 1.16 psi
P(feet) ~ 3.48 psi
Uniform pressure everywhere
On Earth:
In Space:
"
Overpressurisation
" in Upper Body:
-> Impact on cardiovascular
system
Space Adaptation Syndrome
3: Cardiovascular System
Overpressurisation ->
Heart grows to handle increased blood fluid
Overpressurisation sensed by upper body:
Aortic valve (heart)
Baroreceptors (neck)
The body responds:
Wants to restore pressure to level experienced under Earth gravity
Body tries to remove "excess" fluid -
- Kidneys increase urine output
- Decrease in thirstiness
Decrease in total circulating blood volume
Space Adaptation Syndrome
3: Cardiovascular System
Overpressurisation ->
"Orthostatic Intolerance"
Upon returning to Earth gravity conditions, there can be insufficient blood flow to the brain

Simple act of 'standing up' can lead to blacking out
Care required when exiting space vehicle on return to Earth
Exercise countermeasures should be implemented during flight
Space Adaptation Syndrome
3: Cardiovascular System
Lower blood volume -> Decline in heart activity
Reduction in heart rate
Reduction in required cardiovascular muscle
Heart shrinks, muscle atrophy
Cardiovascular effects of microgravity ~
Significant reduction in blood volume
Kidneys lose 10-15 % of body fluid (2-4 kg)
Heart activity decline
Desensitisation of blood pressure sensors (baroreceptors)
Immune system deteriorates
Space Adaptation Syndrome
3: Cardiovascular System
Effect of blood fluid loss:
Blood plasma drop by ~20%
Red blood cell count drop by ~20%
Effect of microgravity:
Red blood cells change shape
On Earth:
"Biconcave Discoid"
In orbit:
More spherical
Reduction in surface area
Affects rate of O2/CO2 transport
Temporary anemia
Space Adaptation Syndrome
4: Vestibular Effects
How many astronauts get sick in space?
Space Adaptation Syndrome
4: Vestibular Effects
Space Motion Sickness [SMS]
50-75% of astronauts suffer SMS
Natural response (!)
Not the same as motion sickness on Earth
Discrepancy between visual input and vestibular system (inner ear)
Lasts for ~ 3 days
No strenuous activities permitted
Illness in space suit could be life-threatening
Inner ear senses rolling/pitching/movement
Gravireceptors (gravity sensors in inner ear, joints) are impaired in weightlessness
Brain must adapt to relying solely on visual input
Space Adaptation Syndrome
4: Vestibular Effects
Clumsiness, motion sickness
Flu-like symptoms
Nausea, vomiting, disorientation
Sweating, skin pallor, salivation, stomach distention
Hallucination/perception
illusions

Potential difficulty in sensing own arms/legs
"Floating" of fixed surroundings
Differs from astronaut to astronaut
Cannot be predicted before flight
Can severely disrupt mission

Pre-flight training, in-flight drugs
Space Motion Sickness [SMS]
Psychology in Space
Common Problems:
2001: A Space Odyssey [1968]
Moon [2009]
Isolation from 'the world'
Confined living conditions
Little privacy from rest of crew
High workload
High stress
Altered circadian rhythms
Humans are not machinery:
Temperamental
Unpredictable
Emotive
Complex requirements
Come in different sizes
Need food, oxygen, water
The Human Body in Space
bit.ly/spacefever
Final Words ~
Space sounds kind of dangerous, right?
The astronauts of today are well-prepared, well-trained and in good hands; under constant supervision

Thanks to pioneering efforts and science over the last 50 years, we understand the environment better than ever
We can prepare and protect from the dangers to ensure the safety of our astronauts
The Human Body in Space
bit.ly/spacefever
Final Words ~
If we want to explore beyond Low Earth Orbit, we need to understand extremely well what environment we are sending people into
Study how humans adapt and react to 'space'
Prepare for future manned missions, e.g. Mars

Still a fantastically exciting field!

(truefacts)

The Human Body in Space
bit.ly/spacefever
The Sky is Not the Limit...
The Human Body in Space
bit.ly/spacefever
Thanks for
Listening!

“The Earth is the cradle of mankind, but one does not live in the cradle forever.”
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1895), the father of rocket science
Visit us in the Science Tent!
University of Southampton Roadshow

-> Life of Satellites
What human conditions need to be maintained in space?
-> 2 major environments
E.g. saliva on the tongue will boil and bubble
-> Decompression experienced by unnamed space suit test subject at NASA in 1966 (!)
contd. ...
Weightlessness?
Water bubble in microgravity
Candle flame in convectionless
environment
(aka the 'Vomit Comet')
Parabolic Flight
Full transcript