The European Space Agency is preparing for an autonomous european manned facility in low earth orbit to be supported by a fully autonomous european in-orbit infrastructure. ESA has established a specific programme, the preparatory program for an european manned space infrastructure (EMSI), to start in 1992. This programme is the first step in establishment of the european manned capability according to the objectives set up by the 1985 and 1986 ESA council meetings at ministerial level. ESA long term project office (D/SSP-LTPO) has been actively pursuing the definition studies of EMSI. Several of these studies have been completed and others are currently underway. System level studies were conducted in 1986 and 1987; follow-on studies mainly centered on the definition of specific EMSI modules and elements (escape vehicle interconnecting element, habitation module) were conducted in 1988 and 1989.Further studies are needed to extend the definition of requirements, configurations and program planning aspects. AERITALIA, AVIONS MARCEL DASSAULT-BREGUET AVIATION and DORNIER are currently involved in a dedicated study on habitability aspects for EMSI scenario analyzing candidate design solutions suitable to satisfy the human factors requirements for long mission duration.