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Microbiological Monitoring for the Constellation Program: Current Requirements and Future ConsiderationsMicrobiological requirements for spaceflight are based on assessments of infectious disease risk which could impact crew health or mission success. The determination of risk from infectious disease is composed of several factors including (1) crew susceptibility, (2) crew exposure to the infectious disease agent, (3) the concentration of the infectious agent, and (4) the characteristics of the infectious agent. As a result of the Health Stabilization Program, stringent monitoring, and cleaning protocols, in-flight environmental microbial monitoring is not necessary for short-duration spaceflights. However, risk factors change for long-duration missions, as exemplified by the presence of medically significant organisms in the environments of both the Mir and International Space Station (ISS). Based upon this historical evidence, requirements for short duration usage aboard the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle and Lunar Lander Vehicle will not require in-flight monitoring; however, as mission duration increases with a Lunar Outpost, an ability to detect microbial hazard will be necessary. The nature of the detection requirements will depend on the maturity of technology in a rapidly evolving marketplace. Regardless, the hardware will still need to maximize information to discipline experts and the crew, while minimizing the size, mass, power consumption, and crew time usage. The refinement of these monitors will be a major goal in our efforts to travel successfully to Mars.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Ott, C. Mark (NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Date Acquired
August 24, 2013
Publication Date
September 27, 2007
Subject Category
Life Sciences (General)
Meeting Information
NASA Microarray Workshop 2007(Huntsville, AL)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.