1997-07-01

Lunar-Mars Life Support Test Project, Phase II: Human Factors and Crew Interactions 972415

Phase II of the Lunar-Mars Life Support Test Project was conducted in June and July of 1996 at the NASA Johnson Space Center. The primary objective for Phase II was to develop and test an integrated human life support system capable of sustaining a crew of four for 30 days in a closed chamber. The crew was continuously present inside a chamber throughout the 30-day test. The objective of this paper is to describe crew interactions and human factors for the test. Crew preparations for the test included training and familiarization of chamber systems and accommodations, and medical and psychological evaluations. During the test, crew members provided metabolic loads for the life support systems, performed maintenance on chamber systems, and evaluated human factors inside the chamber. Overall, the four crew members found the chamber to be comfortable for the 30-day test. The crew performed well together and this was attributed in part to team dynamics, skill mix (one commander, two system experts, and one logistics lead), and a complementary mix of personalities. Communication with and support by family, friends, and colleagues were identified as important contributors to the high morale of the crew during the test. Lessons learned and recommendations for future testing are presented in this paper.

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