Space

NASA launches new institute to explore ways to protect astronauts

astronaut, Astronauts, deepspacemission, HealthX healthyX NASAX ScienceX space, translational research

TL;DR

  • The institute starts working from October 1
  • Translational research is an interdisciplinary model of research
  • California Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, US are also involved in the research

A new institute has been established by the US space agency along with Baylor College of medicine to explore different ways to reduce risks to astronauts who are on long duration space exploration missions such as, ‘NASA’s Journey to Mars’.

The institute starts working from October 1, which will be overseen by NASA’s Human Research Programme. Marshall Porterfield, NASA’s director of Space Life and Physical Sciences Research and Applications said “It’s fitting on the 47th anniversary of humanity’s first moon landing that we’re announcing a new human spaceflight research institute that will help reduce risks for our astronauts on the next giant leap – our Journey to Mars”.

Translational research is an interdisciplinary model of research that aims on translating fundamental research concepts into practice, with appreciable health outcomes. The main aim of this research is to produce new approaches, treatments, technologies or countermeasures that have practical application to spaceflight.

The NASA Translational Research Institute (NTRI) will implement a “bench-to-spaceflight” model, moving results or methods from laboratory experiments or clinical trials to point-of-care astronaut health and performance applications, at the same time it will maintain research leadership in translational human performance, biomedical, environmental, and cognitive and behavioural science, and foster greater involvement of the science community in accomplishing the agency’s human exploration goals.

The space agency reported that translational research can help move solutions into practical application faster than traditional research approaches. The newly found institute will also allow scientists to have experience in research laboratories, both internal and external to NASA, as well as use their knowledge and expertise to decrease human exploration health and performance risks.

California Institute of Technology and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, US are also involved in the research. The research will be performed at the Texas Medical Centre Innovation Institute in Houston, US. The agreement has a potential value of $246 million for a six-year performance period with one additional six-year period that could extend work to September 2028.

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