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HERA Groundlink

Friday, June 21, 2024
2:15 pm
–2:55 pm
*Requires registration

Attend a rare event and connect with crew members in the Human Exploration Research Analog (HERA) within NASA Johnson Space Center. These crews are living in isolation here on Earth to replicate and test what astronauts can expect for long-duration spaceflight missions.

What is HERA?

Spaceflight analogs are any environment that produces the same or similar effects on humans as is experienced in actual spaceflight. NASA uses “analogs” to represent different aspects of spaceflight here on Earth. The Human Exploration Research Analog (HERA) is an analog for the isolated and confined living environment of a long-duration spaceflight missions.

Researchers use the HERA to study how individuals and teams perform, interact, and maintain health during extended periods of isolation in a small volume with little privacy and variable workloads, which can increase stress. Each HERA campaign consists of four identical missions with four crewmembers per mission. Lasting 45-days, each mission simulates transit to/from Mars plus a short period of orbital operations around Mars.

Each HERA campaign has a set of unique research themes that drive the mission objectives and scenarios. The research themes for the next campaign, HERA 7, are:

  • Crew autonomy with communications delay: How does the crew manage tasks independently without immediate contact with mission control?
  • Behavioral health: What are the mental and physiological HERA effects of confinement and isolation during long term missions?
  • Teamwork and multicultural factors: How do international or diverse teams collaborate and communicate with each other?

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