NASA Space Station Science Officer Performs 'FOOT' Work

May 20, 2005

Expedition 11 NASA Science Officer John Phillips conducted the first session of the Foot/Ground Reaction Forces during Spaceflight, or FOOT experiment. FOOT investigates the differences between use of the body’s lower extremities on Earth and in space, as well as changes in the musculoskeletal system during spaceflight. Without appropriate countermeasures, astronauts traveling in space can lose as much bone mineral in the lower part of the body in one month as a typical post-menopausal woman loses in an entire year. Muscle strength also can be lost rapidly during spaceflight.

Phillips wore a pair of customized Lycra cycling tights called the Lower Extremity Monitoring Suit, or LEMS. The instrumented suit measures Phillips’ joint angles, muscle activity and forces on the feet during a typical day on the Space Station. Four of these FOOT sessions are planned for this Expedition, in addition to the measurements taken before and after the mission.

FOOT has the potential to shed new light on the reasons for bone and muscle loss during spaceflight and on the design of exercise countermeasures. This experiment also has significance for understanding, preventing and treating osteoporosis on Earth. Expedition 11 marks the third Expedition that FOOT has been performed in flight. FOOT was previously done on Expeditions 6 and 8.

Focused human physiological and biological Space Station research on astronaut health and the development of countermeasures to protect crews from the space environment will allow for long duration missions to explore beyond low Earth orbit. NASA’s payload operations team at the Marshall Center coordinates U.S. science activities on Space Station.

Source: NASA

Explore further: Chilly end for sex geckos sent into space by Russia

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

End dawns for Europe's space cargo delivery role

Jul 27, 2014

Europe will close an important chapter in its space flight history Tuesday, launching the fifth and final robot ship it had pledged for lifeline deliveries to the International Space Station.

Recommended for you

Caterpillar comet poses for pictures en route to Mars

19 hours ago

Now that's pure gorgeous. As Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring sidles towards its October 19th encounter with Mars, it's passing a trio of sumptuous deep sky objects near the south celestial pole this week. ...

Hoisting a telescope with helium

19 hours ago

Many a child has forgotten to hold tight to the string of a helium balloon only to have it escape and rise until it disappeared in the glare of the sun. Helium balloons want to rise, but launching a balloon ...

User comments : 0