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Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2010 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 05/31/2010  
Task Last Updated: 09/07/2010 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Gap added per HRP Master Task List information dtd 3/14/12 (Ed., 4/13/12)

NOTE: Received NCE to 5/31/2010 (from 6/01/2009) per J. Dardano/JSC (12/08)

Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, we will model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure using a ground-based analogue of post-flight sensorimotor deficits developed during the course of this project. The system uses Galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS) to modulate vestibular input to the brain with a pseudo-random current waveform. Preliminary results suggest that per-GVS exposure generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator.

To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight.

This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of spatial disorientation (SD) is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2010 
Task Progress: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. This is a critical issue, as orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The primary aims of this proposal were to:

1) obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated orbiter landings,

2) and develop a ground-based analog of the effects of microgravity exposure on pilot performance after spaceflight.

Fulfillment of the project aims was carried out in four phases.

Phase I: Measurement of head and eye movement during vehicle operation

We developed a laptop-based system which simultaneously measures 6 degree-of-freedom (6DOF - triaxial angular rate and triaxial linear acceleration) head movement (using Inertial measurement Units, IMUs), 3D eye movement (yaw, pitch and roll), and 6 DOF motion of a vehicle (or simulator cabin, using an IMU), published as:

MacDougall HG, Moore ST (2005) Functional assessment of head-eye coordination during vehicle operation. Optom Vis Sci 82: 706-715.

Phase II: Head-eye coordination during simulated shuttle landings

We obtained head and eye movement data from six pilots during simulated shuttle landings in an Airbus A340 level-D flight simulator at the Airbus flight training centre in Toulouse, France. In addition, head and eye movements were obtained from a NASA test pilot performing a shuttle landing in the VMS at NASA Ames. Results: during the HAC maneuver (where the shuttle banks around a virtual cylinder to align with the runway) the head and eyes rolled towards the visual horizon with a combined gain of 0.14 of bank angle. Pilots alternated fixation between the instruments and the runway during final approach, almost exclusively focusing on the runway after preflare. Optokinetic nystagmus was observed during rollout. During final approach a Heads-Up Display (HUD) reduced pitch head and eye movement. Conclusions: roll tilt of the head and eyes during the HAC tended to align the retina with the visual horizon. Overlaying critical flight information and the approaching runway with the HUD reduced pitch head and eye movement during orbiter final approach in the VMS relative to the A340 (no HUD installed). Published as:

Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Lesceu X, Speyer JJ, Wuyts F, Clark JB (2008) Head-eye coordination during simulated orbiter landing. Aviat Space Environ Med 79: 888-898.

Phase III: Development of ground-based analog of spatial disorientation after spaceflight In the initial project description we proposed using long-term (60 min) 3 Gx centrifugation (3-g linear acceleration applied along the naso-occipital axis) to replicate the sensorimotor effects of microgravity exposure, as developed by a Dutch group at TNO. Although centrifuged subjects exhibited sensorimotor effects consistent with those observed post-flight the effects were short-lived (<60 min) and often accompanied by motion sickness; 40% of veteran astronauts tested experienced nausea and vomiting following 1-hr of 3-Gx centrifugation (Nooij et al. 2004). The logistical complexity of hyper-g centrifugation and the high incidence of motion sickness limited its value as an analog of post-flight sensorimotor deficits. We therefore developed a novel system utilizing electrical stimulation of the vestibular nerve (Galvanic vestibular stimulation - GVS) to replicate the effects of spaceflight on neurological function. The current waveform used in our GVS analog, a pseudorandom sum of sines, was devised such that sensorimotor performance of normal subjects exposed to acute GVS replicated post-landing data from shuttle and International Space Station (ISS) astronauts, namely postural sway, locomotor impairment and decrements in dynamic visual acuity. Subjective validation was provided by seven veteran astronauts (5 shuttle, 1 ISS, 1 Skylab), who reported that the motor effects and illusory sensations of movement generated by the GVS analog were remarkably similar to their post-landing experience. Published as:

MacDougall H, Moore ST, Curthoys IS, Black FO (2006) Modeling postural instability with Galvanic vestibular stimulation. Exp Brain Res 172: 208-220.

Moore ST, MacDougall H, Peters BT, Bloomberg JJ, Curthoys IS, Cohen H (2006) Modeling locomotor dysfunction following spaceflight with Galvanic vestibular stimulation. Exp Brain Res 174: 647-659.

NSBRI (2006) Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation Countermeasure Demonstrated to Astronauts. In: NSBRI Explorer, July 2006.

Phase IV: Validation of GVS as an analog of post-flight spatial disorientation

The aim of this study was to validate an analog of the sensorimotor effects of microgravity, utilizing pseudorandom bilateral bipolar Galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS), during shuttle landing simulations. Pilot (N=11) performance was assessed during simulated shuttle landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator at NASA Ames (used for shuttle pilot training). Subjects performed 8 pairs of identical landing profiles (final approach and touchdown) with and without GVS, presented in a pseudorandom order. Target touchdown speed was on target (204 kts) without GVS but increased significantly (P=0.02) during GVS exposure and was at the upper limit (209 kts) of the target range. Unsuccessful (crash) landings increased from 2.3% without GVS to 9% with GVS. Hard landings, with touchdown speed in the 'red' (unacceptable) range (>214 kts), almost doubled from 15.9% without GVS to 30.7% with GVS. GVS was an effective analog of decrements in post-flight shuttle pilot performance. The ability of GVS to replicate a wide range of post-flight sensorimotor deficits (postural, locomotor, oculomotor, fine motor) supports the hypothesis that central changes in processing of low-frequency otolith input underlie space adaptation syndrome. Submitted for publication:

Moore ST, Dilda V, MacDougall HG (2010) Galvanic vestibular stimulation as an analog of spatial disorientation after spaceflight. Exp Brain Res, in review.

Deliverables:

1) We have developed and validated a portable laptop-based system for evaluation of visuo-motor function during complex operational tasks, such as landing the orbiter.

2) We have developed an ambulatory, reversible, ground-based analog (GVS) capable of accurately replicating the sensorimotor (postural, locomotor, oculomotor and fine-motor) effects of spaceflight, suitable for astronaut training.

3) We have validated the GVS analog in an operational setting (VMS shuttle landings).

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals MacDougall HG, Moore ST. "Functional assessment of head-eye coordination during vehicle operation." Optom Vis Sci. 2005 Aug;82(8):706-15. PMID: 16127336 , Aug-2005
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals MacDougall HG, Moore ST, Curthoys IS, Black FO. "Modeling postural instability with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Exp Brain Res. 2006 Jun;172(2):208-20. PMID: 16432695 , Jun-2006
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Peters BT, Bloomberg JJ, Curthoys, IS, Cohen HS. "Modeling locomotor dysfunction following spaceflight with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Exp Brain Res 2006 Oct;174: 647-59. PMID: 16763834 , Oct-2006
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Lesceu X, Speyer JJ, Wuyts F, Clark JB. "Head-eye coordination during simulated orbiter landing." Aviat Space Environ Med. 2008 Sep;79(9):888-98. PMID: 18785358 , Sep-2008
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, Dilda V, MacDougall HG. "Galvanic vestibular stimulation as an analog of spatial disorientation after spaceflight." Exp Brain Res, in review. August 2010. , Aug-2010
Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2008 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 05/31/2010  
Task Last Updated: 01/07/2008 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Wuyts, Floris  University of Antwerp 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Flight Assignment/Project Notes: NOTE: Received NCE to 5/31/2010 (from 6/01/2009) per J. Dardano/JSC (12/08)

Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, we will model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure using a ground-based analogue of post-flight sensorimotor deficits developed during the course of this project. The system uses Galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS) to modulate vestibualr input to the brain with a pseudorandom current waveform. Preliminary results suggest that per-GVS exposure generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed both post-centrifugation and with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator.

To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight.

This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of SD is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2008 
Task Progress: In the fourth year of this project we have continued work on the development of an ambulatory ground-based analogue of post-flight sensorimotor function. In years one and two we demonstrated that Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation (GVS - electrical current applied via surface electrodes on the mastoid processes that stimulates the balance organs) could be used to replicate postural, locomotor and gaze instability commonly observed after return from space flight (MacDougall et al. 2006; Moore et al. 2006). In year three we demonstrated the GVS analogue to seven veteran astronaut subjects to determine how well the device recreates subjective post-landing motion illusions, as well as the postural, locomotor and oculomotor effects already established. All subjects reported that the perceptions of motion (and the postural and locomotor deficits) generated by the device were remarkably similar to that experienced after landing (NSBRI 2006). In addition, the magnitude of the GVS current required to recreate landing day sensation was proportional to the mission duration of each veteran astronaut. Thus, our work has demonstrated that ambulatory GVS is a simple, reversible model for post-flight spatial disorientation that may be titrated to model the effects of missions of varying duration. In the current year we have continued our work on the GVS analogue of post-flight sensorimotor dysfunction, focusing on the long-term response to GVS. Intermittent exposure to GVS did not elicit habituation to the stimulus (strategies to ignore, tune out, or cope with the destabilizing effects of disruptive vestibular stimuli). Determining the long-term response to GVS has important operational significance, as habituation to repeat applications could potentially diminish the value of GVS as an analogue of post-flight sensorimotor deficits.

We have also continued to work on analysis of head-eye coordination during simulated orbiter landings in an Airbus A340 simulator and the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames. In year three we characterized head, eye and aircraft movement during the banking turn prior to final approach, termed the HAC (Heading Alignment Circle) maneuver. The data demonstrated that both the head and eyes tilt into the turn with a combined magnitude of 6º, providing a combined visually-induced head/eye roll-tilt reflex with a gain of around 14% of bank angle, tending. The roll of the head and eyes likely represents a tendency to align the retina with the earth horizon, to improve spatial orientation by establishing the retinal image of the horizon as a primary visuo-spatial cue. In the current year we extended this result to orbiter landings in the VMS, demonstrating that the Heads Up Display (HUD) did not suppress the tilt of the head and eye towards the visual horizon. In addition, we characterized head-eye coordination during final approach in the A340 and VMS. These results have been submitted as a paper to Aviation Space Environmental Medicine, which is currently in review.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall HG. "A high fidelity model of microgravity exposure for mission simulation and astronaut training." 16th IAA Humans in Space Symposium, Beijing / China, May 20-24, 2007.

Proceedings 16th IAA Humans in Space Symposium, Beijing / China, May 20-24, 2007. , May-2007

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Ondo W. "Ambulatory monitoring of freezing of gait in Parkinson's disease." 11th International Congress on Movement Disorders, Istanbul, Turkey, June 3-7 2007.

Movement Disorders 2007 Apr; 22(16 Suppl): 255. , Apr-2007

Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, Macdougall HG, Ondo WG. "Ambulatory monitoring of freezing of gait in Parkinson's disease." J Neurosci Methods. 2008 Jan 30;167(2):340-8. PMID: 17928063 , Jan-2008
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, Macdougall HG, Gracies JM, Ondo WG. "Locomotor response to levodopa in fluctuating Parkinson's disease." Exp Brain Res. 2007 Sep 8; [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 17828529 , Sep-2007
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Gracies JM, Cohen HS, Ondo WG. "Long-term monitoring of gait in Parkinson's disease." Gait Posture. 2007 Jul;26(2):200-7. Epub 2006 Oct 13. PMID: 17046261 , Jul-2007
Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2007 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 06/01/2009  
Task Last Updated: 01/04/2007 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Wuyts, Floris  University of Antwerp 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, two paradigms will be used to model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure: 1) long-duration hyper-gravity exposure in a centrifuge, and 2) galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS). Preliminary results suggest that post-centrifuge disorientation, and per-GVS exposure, generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed both post-centrifugation and with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator.

To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight.

This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of SD is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2007 
Task Progress: In the third year of this project we have continued work on the development of an ambulatory system for modeling of spatial disorientation induced by microgravity exposure. In years one and two we demonstrated that Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation (GVS - electrical current applied via surface electrodes on the mastoid processes that stimulates the balance organs) could be used to model postural, locomotor and gaze instability commonly observed after return from space flight (MacDougall et al. 2006; Moore et al. 2006). In the current year of this project we begun to test GVS on veteran astronaut subjects to determine how well the device recreates subjective post-landing motion illusions, as well as the postural, locomotor and oculomotor effects already established. Seven veteran astronaut subjects have undergone GVS, and all subjects reported that the perceptions of motion (and the postural and locomotor deficits) generated by the device were remarkably similar to that experienced after landing. In addition, the magnitude of the GVS current required to recreate landing day sensation was proportional to the mission duration of each veteran astronaut. Thus, our work has demonstrated that ambulatory GVS is a simple, reversible model for post-flight spatial disorientation that may be titrated to model the effects of missions of varying duration. We presented the results of our GVS research to the NSBRI User Group (comprised of active and retired astronauts) in October 2006, with the aim of incorporating GVS as a model of spatial disorientation in shuttle pilot training.

We have also continued to work on analysis of head-eye coordination during simulated Orbiter landings. Head, eye and aircraft movement during the banking turn prior to final approach, termed the HAC (Heading Alignment Circle) maneuver, were obtained in 5 pilot subjects in an Airbus A340 full-motion simulator. The data shows that both the head and eyes tilt into the turn with a combined magnitude of 6º, tending to align the retina with the visual horizon. This response was not apparent in zero visibility, and is likely produced from the tilted image of the horizon on the retina. Previous studies (Gallimore et al. 1999, 2000; Patterson et al. 1997) have shown that pilots tilt their head into the turn during banking (the optokinetic cervical reflex); our results extend this finding by demonstrating that the eyes also tilt into the turn, providing a combined visually-induced head/eye roll-tilt reflex with a gain of around 14% of bank angle.

In a related project we have modified the hardware used in the current project to measure stride length in patients with Parkinson’s Disease (PD). A recent publication (Moore et al 2006) demonstrated that long-term community monitoring of gait in PD patients provided an objective measure of stride length changes due to levodopa-related medications and disease severity.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall H. "Galvanic vestibular stimulation as a model of space adaptation syndrome." Presented at the Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA) Annual Scientific Meeting, Orlando, Florida, May 2006.

Proceedings 77th AsMA Scientific Conference, May 2006. , May-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Wuyts FL, MacDougall HG, Pattyn N, Moore ST. "Head-eye coordination and reaction time during G-level transitions experienced during the 39th and 41st ESA-parabolic flight campaigns." Presented at Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA) Annual Scientific Meeting, Orlando, Florida, May 2006.

Proceedings 77th AsMA Scientific Meeting, May 2006. , May-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall H, Cohen, H. "The spontaneous tempo of human locomotion." Presented at Barany Society Meeting, Uppsala Sweden, June 2006.

Proceedings Barany Society 2006 Meeting, June 2006. , Jun-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings MacDougall H, Moore ST, Cohen, H, Bloomberg JJ, Peters B, Black FO, Curthoys IS. "Galvanic vestibular stimulation as a model for human vestibulopathic postural instability and locomotor dysfunction." Presented at Barany Society Meeting, Uppsala Sweden, June 2006.

Proceedings Barany Society 2006 Meeting, June 2006. , Jun-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Clark J, Wuyts F, Lesceu X, Speyer J. "Spatial disorientation during orbiter landing." 7th Symposium on the Role of the Vestibular Organs in Space Exploration, ESA ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, June 2006.

Proc. 7th Symposium on the Role of the Vestibular Organs in Space Exploration, ESA ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, June 2006. , Jun-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings MacDougall H, Moore ST. "Galvanic vestibular stimulation as a model of space adaptation syndrome." 7th Symposium on the Role of the Vestibular Organs in Space Exploration, ESA ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, June 2006.

Proc. 7th Symposium on the Role of the Vestibular Organs in Space Exploration, ESA ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, June 2006. , Jun-2006

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Gracies J-M, Cohen HS, Ondo WG. "Assessment of locomotor response to levodopa in fluctuating Parkinson’s disease." 10th International Congress of Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders, Kyoto, Japan, October 2006.

Movement Disorders 2006 Sep; 21(Suppl. 15): S462. , Sep-2006

Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Peters BT, Bloomberg JJ, Curthoys, IS, Cohen HS. "Modeling locomotor dysfunction following spaceflight with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Exp Brain Res 2006 Oct;174: 647-659. PMID: 16763834 , Oct-2006
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, MacDougall HG, Gracies J-M, Cohen HS, Ondo WG. "Long-term monitoring of gait in Parkinson's disease." Gait Posture. 2006 Oct 12; [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 17046261 http://www.gaitposture.com/article/PIIS0966636206001901/abstract , Oct-2006
Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2006 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 06/01/2009  
Task Last Updated: 03/08/2006 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Wuyts, Floris  University of Antwerp 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, two paradigms will be used to model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure: 1) long-duration hyper-gravity exposure in a centrifuge, and 2) galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS). Preliminary results suggest that post-centrifuge disorientation, and per-GVS exposure, generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed both post-centrifugation and with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator. To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight. This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of SD is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2006 
Task Progress: In the second year of this project we have developed an ambulatory system for modeling of spatial disorientation induced by microgravity exposure. In the first year we demonstrated that a pseudorandom Galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS - electrical current applied via surface electrodes on the mastoid processes that stimulates the balance organs) could be used to model postural instability commonly observed after return from space flight. This work is now published (MacDougall et al. 2006) and included as an Appendix to this report. In the current (second) year of this project we have extended the GVS system in two ways: 1) in addition to the original pseudorandom (stochastic) GVS waveform we have developed a head-coupled Galvanic stimulus that uses the measured head movement to generate a predictable but erroneous vestibular response, analogous to that reported by astronauts post-flight during active and passive head motion; and 2) the GVS apparatus has been miniaturized such that it can be worn by the subject during active tasks such as obstacle course navigation (Fig. 4). In collaboration with Dr. Bloomberg at NASA JSC, 20 subjects underwent two functional tests developed for post-flight astronaut assessment; namely, dynamic visual acuity during treadmill locomotion, and navigation of an obstacle course; while experiencing both forms of GVS. The results demonstrated that GVS generated decrements in visual acuity and mobility that were remarkably similar to that observed in astronauts after both short-duration (shuttle) and ISS missions. Thus, our work has demonstrated that ambulatory GVS is a simple, reversible model for post-flight postural, locomotor and gaze deficits. Moreover, in contrast to other models of spatial disorientation (such as hypergravity centrifugation) GVS does not induce motion sickness. We believe our novel GVS technique may prove useful in astronaut training.

Preliminary data was obtained in September 2005 from one subject undergoing GVS during simulated Orbiter landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames Research Center. The pilot reported that GVS added significantly to the workload required to land the shuttle in a manner similar to “fighting” through vertigo during an instrument approach. In addition, the subject noted that “I had really had a physical and mental workout by the time I got the shuttle on the ground – this is much more likely to be what the astronauts have to contend with”. In the next phase of testing we aim to use GVS in the VMS to test the hypothesis that GVS generates spatial disorientation similar to that experienced after spaceflight, and will induce degradation in pilot performance analogous to that observed in actual shuttle landings.

We examined whether g-transitions alone could account for decrements in pilot performance in an experiment flown aboard two ESA parabolic flight campaigns. Subjects were asked to identify targets that appeared at random on a large screen and head and eye movements were simultaneously acquired. Preliminary data suggests that performance was consistent across the g-transitions (1-g to 1.8-g to 0-g to 1.8-g to 1-g). This supports the original hypothesis of this project; that degradation of pilot performance is due to extended microgravity exposure during space flight, rather than the g-level transitions of reentry.

We have applied elements of the measurement technology developed during this project to measure head movement during unrestrained daily activity over 10 hours in normal subjects (N=20). The results were striking: during locomotor activities (walking, cycling etc) subjects adopted a cadence of 2 Hz (SD 0.15) that was independent of age, height, gender or body mass index. This basic result is of considerable significance – there exists a spontaneous 2 Hz tempo of human locomotion. This work has been published (Macdougall and Moore 2005) and is included as an Appendix to this report.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T.; MacDougall, H. "Spatial disorientation during shuttle landings." Australian Society for Aerospace Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting, Gold Coast, Australia, September 2005.

Proceedings ASAM 2005 , Sep-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T. "Artificial gravity for interplanetary missions" Australian Society for Aerospace Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting, Gold Coast, Australia, September 2005.

Proceedings ASAM 2005 , Sep-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings MacDougall, H.; Moore, S.T. "Modeling Space Adaptation Syndrome (SAS) with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Australian Society for Aerospace Medicine Annual Scientific Meeting, Gold Coast, Australia, September 2005.

Proceedings ASAM 2005 , Sep-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings MacDougall, H.; Moore, S.T. "The spontaneous tempo of human locomotion" Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, November 2005.

Program No. 864.9. 2005 Abstract Viewer/Itinerary Planner. Washington, DC: Society for Neuroscience , Oct-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T.; MacDougall, H.; Curthoys, I.S. ; Black, F.O. "Galvanic vestibular stimulation as a model for human locomotor dysfunction." Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, November 2005.

Program No. 864.10. 2005 Abstract Viewer/Itinerary Planner. Washington, DC: Society for Neuroscience , Nov-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Black, F.O.; MacDougall, H.G.; Curthoys, I.S.; Moore, S.T. "Modeling vestibulopathic postural instability with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, November 2005.

Program No. 168.7. 2005 Abstract Viewer/Itinerary Planner. Washington, DC: Society for Neuroscience , Nov-2005

Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals MacDougall HG, Moore ST. "Marching to the beat of the same drummer: the spontaneous tempo of human locomotion." J Appl Physiol. 2005 Sep;99(3):1164-73. PMID: 15890757 , Sep-2005
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals MacDougall HG, Moore ST, Curthoys IS, Black FO. "Modeling postural instability with Galvanic vestibular stimulation." Exp Brain Res. 2006 Jun;172(2):208-20. Epub 2006 Jan 24. PMID: 16432695 http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00221-005-0329-y , Jun-2006
NASA Technical Documents Moore ST, MacDougall HG. "Enhanced video-oculography system." NASA Technical Brief MSC 23957-1, July 2005. , Jul-2005
Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2005 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 06/01/2009  
Task Last Updated: 07/22/2005 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Wuyts, Floris  University of Antwerp 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, two paradigms will be used to model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure: 1) long-duration hyper-gravity exposure in a centrifuge, and 2) galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS). Preliminary results suggest that post-centrifuge disorientation, and per-GVS exposure, generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed both post-centrifugation and with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator. To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight. This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of SD is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2005 
Task Progress: A laptop-based system for measuring head, eye, and cabin movement has been developed and tested in both a commercial flight simualtor (Airbus A340-600) and the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames (used for shuttle landing training).

Ambulatory system for delivering Galvanic Vestibular Stimulation to simulate postural, perceptual and oculomotor effects of microgravity-induced spatial disorientation has been developed.

Head-eye coordination during simulated shuttle landings has been assessed in 6 subjects in a commercial flight simulator (Airbus, Toulouse, France).

GVS as a model for SD has been verified using tests of postural stability, performance on an obstacle course, and dynamic visual acuity. (These tests are routinely performed on returning astronauts). The data demonstrate that our GVS paradigm generates deficits in these areas very similiar to that observed in astronauts after flight.

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T.; MacDougall, H.; Clark, J.B.; Wuyts, F.; Lesceu, X.; Speyer, J.J.; Cohen, B. "Spatial disorientation - how the brain interprets linear acceleration during flight" Barany Society International Congress, Paris, France

J Vest Res 14: 114 (ABSTRACT), , Jul-2004

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings MacDougall, H.G.; Moore, S.T.; Cohen, B. "Ambulatory monitoring of high frequency otolith stimulation" Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA.

Program No. 867.11 , Nov-2004

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T.; MacDougall, H.; Clark, J.B.; Wuyts, F.; Lesceu, X.; Speyer, J.J.; Cohen, B. "Head-eye coordination during simulated Orbiter landings" Bioastronautics Investigators Workshop, Galveston TX, January 2005

Proceedings Bioastronautics Investigators Workshop, Galveston TX , Jan-2005

Abstracts for Journals and Proceedings Moore, S.T.; MacDougall, H.; Clark, J.B.; Wuyts, F.; Lesceu, X.; Speyer, J.J.; Cohen, B. "Head-eye coordination during simulated Orbiter landings" Humans in Space Symposium, Graz Austria

Proceedings Humans in Space Conference, Graz, Austria, , May-2005

Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, Cohen B, Raphan T, Berthoz A, Clément G. "Spatial orientation of optokinetic nystagmus and ocular pursuit during orbital space flight." Exp Brain Res. 2005 Jan;160(1):38-59. PMID: 15289967 , Jan-2005
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals Moore ST, Hirasaki E, Raphan T, Cohen B. "Instantaneous rotation axes during active head movements." J Vestib Res. 2005;15(2):73-80. PMID: 15951621 , Jun-2005
Articles in Peer-reviewed Journals MacDougall HG, Moore ST. "Functional assessment of head-eye coordination during vehicle operation." Optom Vis Sci. 2005 Aug;82(8):706-15. PMID: 16127336 , Aug-2005
Project Title:  Head-eye Coordination during Simulated Orbiter Landings Reduce
Fiscal Year: FY 2004 
Division: Human Research 
Research Discipline/Element:
HRP HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Start Date: 05/15/2004  
End Date: 06/01/2009  
Task Last Updated: 02/24/2010 
Download report in PDF pdf
Principal Investigator/Affiliation:   Moore, Steven T. Ph.D. / Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Address:  Human Aerospace Laboratory 
Department of Neurology 
New York , NY 10029 
Email: s.moore@cqu.edu.au 
Phone: 212-241-1943  
Congressional District: 14 
Web:  
Organization Type: UNIVERSITY 
Organization Name: Mount Sinai School of Medicine 
Joint Agency:  
Comments: NOTE: PI moved to Central Queensland University, Australia, July 2016. 
Co-Investigator(s)
Affiliation: 
MacDougall, Hamish  Mt Sinai School of Medicine 
Clark, Jonathon  NASA Johnson Space Center 
Wuyts, Floris  University of Antwerp 
Lesceu, Xavier  Airbus 
Speyer, Jean-Jacques  Airbus 
Project Information: Grant/Contract No. NNJ04HF51G 
Responsible Center: NASA JSC 
Grant Monitor:  
Center Contact:   
Solicitation / Funding Source: 2003 Biomedical Research & Countermeasures 03-OBPR-04 
Grant/Contract No.: NNJ04HF51G 
Project Type: GROUND 
Flight Program:  
TechPort: No 
No. of Post Docs:
No. of PhD Candidates:
No. of Master's Candidates:
No. of Bachelor's Candidates:
No. of PhD Degrees:  
No. of Master's Degrees:  
No. of Bachelor's Degrees:  
Human Research Program Elements: (1) HHC:Human Health Countermeasures
Human Research Program Risks: (1) Sensorimotor:Risk of Altered Sensorimotor/Vestibular Function Impacting Critical Mission Tasks (Revised as of IRP Rev M)
Human Research Program Gaps: (1) SM06:Can a seated manual/visual performance assessment after long-duration spaceflight be completed? (OBSOLETE - Merged with SM12 to create SM6.1, per IRP Rev F)
Task Description: Up to 90% of crewmembers experience spatial disorientation during reentry and landing of the Orbiter, with prevalence proportional to the length of the mission. The possibility of extending shuttle missions is currently under investigation, and it is likely that the incidence and severity of spatial disorientation during reentry will increase with flight duration. This is a critical issue, as Orbiter landing data shows a decrement in performance following microgravity exposure compared to simulated landings in the Vertical Motion Simulator (VMS) at NASA Ames and the NASA Shuttle Training Aircraft. Despite the potential impact on landing operations, the basis of microgravity-related spatial disorientation is poorly understood. The aim of this proposal is to obtain basic data on the characteristics of head and eye movements during simulated Orbiter landings. This information will be used to determine landing tasks that may induce spatial disorientation. In addition, we will model spatial disorientation due to microgravity exposure using a ground-based analogue of post-flight sensorimotor deficits developed during the course of this project. The system uses Galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS) to modulate vestibualr input to the brain with a pseudorandom current waveform. Preliminary results suggest that per-GVS exposure generate symptoms of spatial disorientation comparable to space flight. Simulated landings in the VMS will be performed both post-centrifugation and with GVS, to test the hypothesis that spatial disorientation diminishes head-eye coordination and landing performance. This may serve as a model for the deterioration in pilot performance during reentry, and provide a training regimen to allow commanders and pilots to experience spatial disorientation in a simulator.

To develop a model of spatial disorientation (SD) due to microgravity exposure that can be used to familiarize shuttle pilots with SD symptoms during simulated landings, as well as a training tool to improve landing performance after space flight.

This project addresses several questions from the Bioastronautics roadmap concerning disorientation and vertigo during g-level transitions, such as experienced during landing. Development of a ground-based model will help improve shuttle landing performance in the in the short term and will significantly improve mission safety, as several SD incidents impacting Orbiter safety during landing have been documented. In the long term, the SD model developed by this project will have application to future long-duration missions to ensure pilots can monitor automatic landings, and can take manual control of the space craft in off-nominal situations. The SD model may also be used to train astronauts for emergency egress and EVA on a planetary body after g-level transitions.

Research Impact/Earth Benefits: Development of a training regime incorporating a model of SD is of potential use in commercial and military aviation, where significant losses of aircraft and life occur each year due to SD-related mishaps.

Task Progress & Bibliography Information FY2004 
Task Progress: New project for FY2004.

[Ed. note: FY2004 record added to Task Book in 02/2010 for statistical purposes]

Bibliography Type: Description: (Last Updated: 09/07/2020) 

Show Cumulative Bibliography Listing
 
 None in FY 2004