Human performance data in a high workload environment during the simulated Mars expedition "AustroMars"

Gernot Groemer, Verena Gruber, Sheryl Bishop, Doris Peham, Luzian Wolf, Birgit Högl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

AustroMars was the simulation of a crewed expedition on the surface of planet Mars, taking place in April 2006 at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah. Six carefully selected "analogue astronauts" (out of 184 candidates) performed 20 experiments in the fields of robotics, analogue planetary and life sciences as well as human exploration. During the 2-week mission, the MDRS served as base for their research activities and exploratory excursions. Modelled after selection and training principles of astronauts and pilots, although in a nutshell, the crew underwent a training including education in science and engineering skills as well as physical and mental training. A dense flight plan, physically challenging experiments (including extravehicular activities) and a complimentary set of human factors research experiments offered a unique opportunity to study the impact of a high workload on crew vigilance. The data presented here focus on the validated pupillographic sleepiness test, salivary assay data (such as DHEA, Cortisol, P17-OH, Fasting Insulin and MB2S), a complimentary set of reaction and cognitive function tests as well as a novel technique using eye movements as indicator for vigilance, the Fatigue Monitoring System FAMOS. The data of the 6-person simulated flight crew were complemented by pre/post-flight measurements as well as by 3 test subjects (back-up crew).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)780-787
Number of pages8
JournalActa Astronautica
Volume66
Issue number5-6
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes

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Keywords

  • AustroMars
  • Human Mars Missions
  • Mars Analogue Research
  • Mars Exploration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering

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