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crew restraint design for the international space stationWith permanent human presence onboard the International Space Station (ISS), crews will be living and working in microgravity, dealing with the challenges of a weightless environment. In addition, the confined nature of the spacecraft environment results in ergonomic challenges such as limited visibility and access to the activity areas, as well as prolonged periods of unnatural postures. Without optimum restraints, crewmembers may be handicapped for performing some of the on-orbit tasks. Currently, many of the tasks on ISS are performed with the crew restrained merely by hooking their arms or toes around handrails to steady themselves. This is adequate for some tasks, but not all. There have been some reports of discomfort/calluses on the top of the toes. In addition, this type of restraint is simply insufficient for tasks that require a large degree of stability. Glovebox design is a good example of a confined workstation concept requiring stability for successful use. They are widely used in industry, university, and government laboratories, as well as in the space environment, and are known to cause postural limitations and visual restrictions. Although there are numerous guidelines pertaining to ventilation, seals, and glove attachment, most of the data have been gathered in a 1-g environment, or are from studies that were conducted prior to the early 1980 s. Little is known about how best to restrain a crewmember using a glovebox in microgravity. Another ISS task that requires special consideration with respect to restraints is robotic teleoperation. The Robot Systems Technology Branch at the NASA Johnson Space Center is developing a humanoid robot astronaut, or Robonaut. It is being designed to perform extravehicular activities (EVAs) in the hazardous environment of space. An astronaut located inside the ISS will remotely operate Robonaut through a telepresence control system. Essentially, the robot mimics every move the operator makes. This requires the operator to be stable enough to prevent inadvertent movements, while allowing the flexibility to accomplish the controlled movements of the robot. Some type of special purpose restraint will be required to operate Robonaut and similar devices.
Document ID
20060009022
Document Type
Other
Authors
Norris, Lena
(NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Holden, Kritina
(NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Whitmore, Mihriban
(NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2006
Subject Category
Space Transportation and Safety
Meeting Information
Space 2004 Conference and Exposition(San Diego, CA)
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: NAS9-02078
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.