Water Immersion Ballasted Partial Gravity for Lunar and Martian EVA Simulation

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2007-08-20

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The University of Maryland Space Systems Laboratory is developing the capability to simulate partial gravity levels for human operational activities through the use of ballast on body segments in the underwater environment. This capability will be important as NASA prepares to return to the Moon by the end of the next decade. This thesis discusses various forms of partial gravity simulation used in the past, and discusses applications for ballasted underwater simulations. Primary application of this technique is for static or quasistatic activities, such as collecting basic anthropometric data on reach envelopes or postural control, as well as accumulating an experience base on partial gravity habitat and vehicle design and operations. The research conducted investigated collecting postural stability data through the use of a controlled disturbance to the ballasted subject.

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