First of Fall Brown Bag Seminar Series Features Travis Nelson
The fall semester Brown Bag Seminar Series features graduate students providing presentations on their current research and recent internships. The series continues on Wednesday, September 3rd, featuring grad student Travis Nelson presenting "Research on High Stress Environment Operations”
This series of presentations will be held in the Space Studies Library at noon. Lunch will be served. All students are expected to attend.
About the topic: The dangerous nature of human spaceflight increases the risk and frequency of emergency situations & stressful events for astronauts and has often negatively affected their mental health and performance. Currently, astronauts are spending increasingly more time in the microgravity environment and therefor research must be increased within the human factors area of long duration spaceflight. Circadian rhythm changes, operational performance and interpersonal behavior changes are often associated with stressful, isolated and confined environments such as space, Antarctic missions, submarines and prison. The future of long duration human spaceflight beyond the relative safety of low Earth orbit will continue to be benefitted by simulated analog space habitation studies completed on Earth. Travis Nelson’s fall 2014 research will consist of obtaining human data collection from crew participants utilizing UND Space Studies infrastructure (habitat, electric rover and 2 NDX-2AT space suits). The research is expected to gain valuable data collection of stress, performance and circadian rhythm changes that could benefit new focuses of crew training, selection methodology and inflight operations. Data points will be collected over 30 days by monitoring 3-4 human participants during numerous simulated spaceflight activities while using the Inflatable Lunar/Martian Habitat system. Ground based confinement studies are suitable for validating the effects of stress arising primarily due to confinement & isolation and produce results apart from other negative stressors experienced in microgravity. The ability to control ground based simulated spaceflight habitation offers researchers the ability to safely obtain various types of above mentioned human data collection. Such data can then be used to further develop the safety, performance and well-being of astronauts as we move further into the solar system.
About the presenter: Travis Nelson is from Devils Lake, ND and has his B.S. Psychology from UND with an experimental research emphasis, was a member of the UND undergraduate honors program, and is currently completing his final semester of the M.S. Space Studies program with a human factors emphasis under Dr. Vadim Rygalov. During the summer of 2014, Travis and several colleagues were involved with coordinating, planning and execution of operations for the national Academic High Altitude Conference. Forty conference participants from around the country gathered at UND to share presentations, take educational or technical workshops and collaborate with high school students & professionals in the field of high altitude ballooning. Over the summer, Travis also completed nine space studies credits, started thesis work, made improvements to the Inflatable Lunar/Martian Habitat, and created two pairs of NDX-1 space suit torso and helmet components for Dr. Pablo de Leon. His interests apart from graduate education include amateur rocketry, amateur astronomy, cosmology, flying, boating in the summer and snowmobiling in the winter.
For information on the Brown Bag Seminar Series, please contact Space Studies faculty member Dr. Vadim Rygalov.