NTRS - NASA Technical Reports Server

Back to Results
Digital Astronaut Project Biomechanical Models: Biomechanical Modeling of Squat, Single-Leg Squat and Heel Raise Exercises on the Hybrid Ultimate Lifting Kit (HULK)The NASA Digital Astronaut Project (DAP) implements well-vetted computational models to predict and assess spaceflight health and performance risks, and to enhance countermeasure development. The DAP Musculoskeletal Modeling effort is developing computational models to inform exercise countermeasure development and to predict physical performance capabilities after a length of time in space. For example, integrated exercise device-biomechanical models can determine localized loading, which will be used as input to muscle and bone adaptation models to estimate the effectiveness of the exercise countermeasure. In addition, simulations of mission tasks can be used to estimate the astronaut's ability to perform the task after exposure to microgravity and after using various exercise countermeasures. The software package OpenSim (Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA) (Ref. 1) is being used to create the DAP biomechanical models and its built-in muscle model is the starting point for the DAP muscle model. During Exploration missions, such as those to asteroids and Mars, astronauts will be exposed to reduced gravity for extended periods. Therefore, the crew must have access to exercise countermeasures that can maintain their musculoskeletal and aerobic health. Exploration vehicles may have very limited volume and power available to accommodate such capabilities, even more so than the International Space Station (ISS). The exercise devices flown on Exploration missions must be designed to provide sufficient load during the performance of various resistance and aerobic/anaerobic exercises while meeting potential additional requirements of limited mass, volume and power. Given that it is not practical to manufacture and test (ground, analog and/or flight) all candidate devices, nor is it always possible to obtain data such as localized muscle and bone loading empirically, computational modeling can estimate the localized loading during various exercise modalities performed on a given device to help formulate exercise prescriptions and other operational considerations. With this in mind, NASA's Digital Astronaut Project (DAP) is supporting the Advanced Exercise Concepts (AEC) Project, Exercise Physiology and Countermeasures (ExPC) laboratory and NSBRI-funded researchers by developing and implementing well-validated computational models of exercises with advanced exercise device concepts. This report focuses specifically on lower-body resistance exercises performed with the Hybrid Ultimate Lifting Kit (HULK) device as a deliverable to the AEC Project.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Glenn Research Center
Document Type
Technical Memorandum (TM)
Thompson, William K.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Gallo, Christopher A.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Crentsil, Lawton
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Lewandowski, Beth E.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Humphreys, Brad T.
(ZIN Technologies, Inc. Middleburg Heights, OH, United States)
DeWitt, John K.
(Wyle Science, Technology and Engineering Group Houston, TX, United States)
Fincke, Renita S.
(Wyle Science, Technology and Engineering Group Houston, TX, United States)
Mulugeta, Lealem
(Universities Space Research Association Houston, TX, United States)
Date Acquired
November 4, 2015
Publication Date
September 1, 2015
Subject Category
Man/System Technology And Life Support
Aerospace Medicine
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 516724.02.02.10
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
computational modeling
exercise physiology
No Preview Available