NASA Undersea Mission Begins

Aug 07, 2007
NASA Undersea Mission Begins
NEEMO 11 crew member works near the undersea habitat "Aquarius" during a session of extravehicular activity for the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO) project. Image credit: NASA

Three astronauts and a Constellation Program aerospace engineer began a 10-day NASA mission in the ocean depths off the Florida coast Aug. 6. They will test lunar exploration concepts and a suite of long-duration spaceflight medical objectives.

Veteran space flyer and aquanaut Nicholas Patrick is leading the undersea mission aboard the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Aquarius Underwater Laboratory.

NASA Astronaut Richard Arnold, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Astronaut Satoshi Furukawa and systems integration engineer Christopher Gerty complete the crew.

During the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations 13 (NEEMO 13), the crew are conducting a variety of undersea "moon walks" to test concepts for future lunar exploration using advanced navigation and communication equipment.

“This crew will work much more independently from the mission control team than on previous missions,” said NEEMO Project Manager Bill Todd of the United Space Alliance at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. “This autonomous mode of operation will encourage the crew to make real-time decisions about daily operations similar to what we think will be necessary for lunar and Mars missions. The idea is to show how procedures and training for future missions can be adapted, considering the reduced direct communication with Mission Control those crews will encounter.”

Visit the NOAA Web site for more on Aquarius, including a virtual dive to the underwater habitat.

Source: NASA

Explore further: NASA's Curiosity Mars rover studies rock-layer contact zone

Related Stories

Me and my world: The human factor in space

23 hours ago

The world around us is defined by how we interact with it. But what if our world was out of this world? As part of NASA's One-Year Mission, researchers are studying how astronauts interact with the "world" ...

Russian cosmonaut sets record for most time in space

Jun 30, 2015

Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka, who is the current commander of the International Space Station, has set a new record for most time spent in space, with a total of 803 days, Russian space agency said Tuesday.

New plan proposed to send humans to Mars

Jun 29, 2015

A new, cost-constrained U.S. strategy to send humans on Mars, could be achieved within projected NASA budgets by minimizing new developments and relying mainly on already available or planned NASA assets. ...

Recommended for you

What is a terrestrial planet?

1 hour ago

In studying our solar system over the course of many centuries, astronomers learned a great deal about the types of planets that exist in our universe. This knowledge has since expanded thanks to the discovery ...

Working out in artificial gravity

2 hours ago

Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) have a number of exercise options, including a mechanical bicycle bolted to the floor, a weightlifting machine strapped to the wall, and a strap-down treadmill. ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.