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Technical Paper

Considerations in the Development of Habitats for the Support of Live Rodents on the International Space Station

The animal habitat under development for the International Space Station (ISS) provides a unique opportunity for the physiological and biological science community to perform controlled experiments in microgravity on rats and mice. This paper discusses the complexities that arise in developing a new animal habitat to be flown aboard the ISS. Such development is incremental and moves forward by employing the past successes, learning from experienced shortcomings, and utilizing the latest technologies. The standard vivarium cage on the ground can be a very simple construction, however the habitat required for rodents in microgravity on the ISS is extremely complex. This discussion presents an overview of the system requirements and focuses on the unique scientific and engineering considerations in the development of the controlled animal habitat parameters. In addition, the challenges to development, specific science, animal welfare, and engineering issues are covered.
Technical Paper

Fundamental Biology Research During the NASA/Mir Science Program

A multi-discipline, multi-year collaborative spaceflight research program (NASA/Mir Science Program) has been established between the United States and Russia utilizing the capabilities of the Russian Mir Space Station and the NASA space shuttle fleet. As a key research discipline to be carried out onboard Mir, fundamental biology research encompasses three basic objectives: first, to investigate long-term effects of microgravity upon plant and avian physiology and developmental biology; second, to investigate the long-term effects of microgravity upon circadian rhythm patterns of biological systems; and third, to characterize the long-term radiation environment (internal and external) of the Russian Mir space station. The first joint U.S./Russian fundamental biology research on-board Mir is scheduled to begin in March, 1995 with the Mir mission 18 and conclude with the docking of the U.S. shuttle to Mir in June, 1995 during the STS-71, Spacelab/Mir Mission-1 (SLM-1).
Technical Paper

Category A One-Engine-Inoperative Procedures and Pilot Aids for Multi-Engine Civil Rotorcraft

This paper summarizes the results to date of an on-going research program being conducted by NASA in conjunction with the FAA vertical flight program office. The goal of the program is to reduce pilot workload and increase safety for rotorcraft category A terminal area procedures. Two piloted simulations were conducted on the NASA Ames Vertical Motion Simulator to examine the benefits of optimal procedures, cockpit displays, and alternate cueing methods. Measures of performance, handling qualities ratings and pilot comments indicate that such enhancements can greatly assist a pilot in handling an engine failure in the terminal area.
Technical Paper

The NASA Ames Controlled Environment Research Chamber - Present Status

The Controlled Environment Research Chamber (CERC) at the NASA Ames Research Center was created for early-on investigation of promising new technologies for life support of advanced space exploration missions. The CERC facility is being used to address the advanced technology requirements necessary to implement an integrated working and living environment for a planetary habitat. The CERC, along with a human-powered centrifuge, a planetary terrain simulator, advanced displays, and a virtual reality capability, is able to develop and demonstrate applicable technologies for future planetary exploration. There will be several robotic mechanisms performing exploration tasks external to the habitat that will be controlled through the virtual environment to provide representative workloads for the crew.
Technical Paper

Development of Experiment Kits for Processing Biological Samples In-Flight on SLS-2

The Spacelab Life Sciences-2 (SLS-2) mission provided scientists with the unique opportunity of obtaining inflight rodent tissue and blood samples during a 14-day mission flown in October, 1993. In order to successfully obtain these samples, Ames Research Center's Space Life Sciences Payloads Office has developed an innovative, modular approach to packaging the instruments used to obtain and preserve the inflight tissue and blood samples associated with the hematology experiments on SLS-2. The design approach organized the multitude of instruments into 12 different 5x6x1 inch kits which were each used to accomplish a particular experiment functional objective on any given day during the mission. The twelve basic kits included blood processing, isotope and erythropoietin injection, body mass measurement, and microscope slides.
Technical Paper

Space Simulation in the Neutral Buoyancy Test Facility

Various methods have been used to simulate reduced gravity environments for space systems research and development. Neutral buoyancy has been the most universally used simulation of zero-g. This paper describes the facilities, personnel and experimental work that are associated with the Neutral Buoyancy Test Facility (NBTF) at NASA Ames Research Center (ARC). This facility provides a unique underwater environment for the researcher to simulate reduced gravity activities and evaluate the performance of space-related equipment. The NBTF's small size gives it several advantages over larger water facilities. First, a smaller crew ensures a lower overhead. Second, the facility is used for research purposes only, eliminating any scheduling conflicts with astronaut training. Lastly, the small volume of water allows the researcher to more easily vary the water temperature. This feature is ideal for investigations of astronaut thermal comfort and regulation.
Technical Paper

Mentoring SFRM: A New Approach to International Space Station Flight Controller Training

The Mission Operations Directorate (MOD) of the Johnson Space Center is responsible for providing continuous operations support for the International Space Station (ISS). Operations support requires flight controllers who are skilled in team performance as well as the technical operations of the ISS. ISS flight controller certification has evolved to include a balanced focus on the development of team performance and technical expertise. The latest challenge the ISS team faces is how to certify an ISS flight controller to the required level of effectiveness in one year. Space Flight Resource Management (SFRM) training, a NASA adapted variant of Crew Resource Management (CRM), is expanding the role of senior flight controllers as mentors to help meet that challenge. This paper explains our mentoring approach and discusses its effectiveness and future applicability in promoting SFRM/CRM skills.
Technical Paper

Online Project Information System (OPIS) Description, Annual Reporting Outcomes, and Resulting Improvements

The On-line Project Information System (OPIS) is the Exploration Life Support (ELS) mechanism for task data sharing and annual reporting. Fiscal year 2008 (FY08) was the first year in which ELS Principal Investigators (PI's) were required to complete an OPIS annual report. The reporting process consists of downloading a template that is customized to the task deliverable type(s), completing the report, and uploading the document to OPIS for review and approval. In addition to providing a general status and overview of OPIS features, this paper describes the user critiques and resulting system modifications of the first year of OPIS reporting efforts. Specifically, this paper discusses process communication and logistics issues, user interface ambiguity, report completion challenges, and the resultant or pending system improvements designed to circumvent such issues for the fiscal year 2009 reporting effort.
Technical Paper

Development Status of a Low-Power CO2 Removal and Compression System for Closed-Loop Air Revitalization

The “low power-CO2 removal (LPCOR) system” is an advanced air revitalization system that is under development at NASA Ames Research Center. The LPCOR utilizes the fundamental design features of the ‘four bed molecular sieve’ (4BMS) CO2 removal technology of the International Space Station (ISS). LPCOR improves power efficiency by replacing the desiccant beds of the 4BMS with a membrane dryer and a state-of-the-art, structured adsorbent device that collectively require 25% of the thermal energy required by the 4BMS desiccant beds for regeneration. Compared to the 4BMS technology, it has the added functionality to deliver pure, compressed CO2 for oxygen recovery. The CO2 removal and recovery functions are performed in a two-stage adsorption compressor. CO2 is removed from the cabin air and partially compressed in the first stage. The second stage performs further compression and delivers the compressed CO2 to a reduction unit such as a Sabatier reactor for oxygen recovery.
Technical Paper

Supporting Constellation Mission Training from Crew to Controllers

Training to operate and manage Constellation vehicles, which include a crewed spacecraft and the lunar lander, is an essential part of the Constellation program. This paper discusses the on-going preparations for a Constellation Training Facility (CxTF). CxTF will be compromised of training simulators that will be used, in part, to prepare crew and flight controllers for vehicle operations. Current training simulators are reviewed to identify and outline key CxTF elements, i.e., part-task and full-task trainers. These trainers are further discussed within the context of the Constellation missions.
Technical Paper

A Simple Project Process Model for Estimating and Controlling Cost and Schedule

This work presents a simple and useful project process model. The project model directly shows how a few basic parameters determine project duration and cost and how changes in these parameters can improve them. Project cost and duration can be traded-off by adjusting the work rate and staffing level. A project's duration and cost can be computed on the back of an envelope, with an engineering calculator, or in a computer spreadsheet. The project model can be simulated dynamically for further insight. The project model shows how and why projects can greatly exceed their expected duration and cost. Delays and rework requirements may create work feedback loops that increase cost and schedule in non-proportional and non-intuitive ways.
Technical Paper

Utilization of Virtual Environments for Astronaut Crew Training

The development of virtual environment technology at NASA Ames Research Center and other research institutions has created opportunities for enhancing human performance. The application of this technology to training astronaut flight crews planning to go onboard the International Space Station has already begun at the NASA Johnson Space Center. A unique application of virtual environments to crew training is envisioned at NASA Ames Research Center which combines state of the art technology with haptic feedback to create a method for training crewmembers on critical life sciences operations which require fine motor skills. This paper describes such a concept, known as the Virtual Glovebox, as well as surveys other applications of virtual environments to astronaut crew training.
Technical Paper

Assessment of the Vapor Phase Catalytic Ammonia Removal (VPCAR) Technology at the MSFC ECLS Test Facility

The Vapor Phase Catalytic Ammonia Removal (VPCAR) technology has been previously discussed as a viable option for the Exploration Water Recovery System. This technology integrates a phase change process with catalytic oxidation in the vapor phase to produce potable water from exploration mission wastewaters. A developmental prototype VPCAR was designed, built and tested under funding provided by a National Research Announcement (NRA) project. The core technology, a Wiped Film Rotating Device (WFRD) was provided by Water Reuse Technologies under the NRA, whereas Hamilton Sundstrand Space Systems International performed the hardware integration and acceptance test of the system. Personnel at the Ames Research Center performed initial systems test of the VPCAR using ersatz solutions. To assess the viability of this hardware for Exploration Life Support (ELS) applications, the hardware has been modified and tested at the MSFC ECLS Test Facility.
Technical Paper

Idealized Modeling and Analysis of the Shuttle Orbiter Wing Leading Edge Impact Data

Some selected segments of the ascent and the on-orbit data from the Space Shuttle flight, STS114, as well as some selected laboratory test article data have been analyzed using wavelets, power spectrum and autocorrelation function. Additionally, a simple approximate noise test was performed on these data segments to confirm the presence or absence of white noise behavior in the data. This study was initially directed at characterizing the on-orbit background against which a signature due to an impact during on-orbit operation could be identified. The laboratory data analyzed here mimic low velocity impact that the Orbiter may be subjected to during the very initial stages of ascent.
Technical Paper

Integrated Use of Data Mining and Statistical Analysis Methods to Analyze Air Traffic Delays

Linear regression is the primary data analysis method used in the development of air traffic delay models. When the data being studied does indeed have an underlying linear model, this approach would produce the best-fitting model as expected. However, it has been argued by ATM researchers [Wieland2005, Evans2004] that the underlying delay models are primarily non-linear. Furthermore, the delays being modeled often depend not only on the observable independent variables being studied but also on other variables not being considered. The traditional regression approach alone may not be best suited to study these type of problems. In this paper, we propose an alternate methodology based on partitioning the data using statistical and decision tree learning methods. We then show the utility of this model in a variety of different ATM modeling problems.
Technical Paper

Integration of Cockpit Displays for Surface Operations: The Final Stage of a Human-Centered Design Approach

A suite of cockpit navigation displays for low-visibility airport surface operations has been designed by researchers at NASA Ames Research Center following a human-centered process. This paper reports on the final research effort in this process that examined the procedural integration of these technologies into the flight deck. Using NASA Ames' high-fidelity Advanced Concepts Flight Simulator, eighteen airline crews completed fourteen low-visibility (RVR 1000′) land-and-taxi scenarios that included both nominal (i.e., hold short of intersections, route amendments) and off-nominal taxi scenarios designed to assess how pilots integrate these technologies into their procedures and operations. Recommendations for integrating datalink and cockpit displays into current and future surface operations are provided.
Technical Paper

An Extensible Information Grid for Risk Management

This paper describes recent work on developing an extensible information grid for risk management at NASA — a RISK INFORMATION GRID. This grid is being developed by integrating information grid technology with risk management processes for a variety of risk related applications. To date, RISK GRID applications are being developed for three main NASA processes: risk management — a closed-loop iterative process for explicit risk management, program/project management — a proactive process that includes risk management, and mishap management — a feedback loop for learning from historical risks that ‘escaped’ other processes. This is enabled through an architecture involving an extensible database, structuring information with XML, ‘schema-less’ mapping of XML, and secure server-mediated communication using standard protocols.
Technical Paper

Training Pilots for In-flight Icing: Cognitive Foundations for Effective Learning and Operational Application

Aviation training has remained largely untouched by decades of development in cognitive science. In aviation, people must be trained to perform complicated tasks and make good operational decisions in complex dynamic environments. However, traditional approaches to professional aviation training are not well designed to accomplish this goal. Aviation training has been based mainly on relatively rigid classroom teaching of factual information followed by on-the-job mentoring. This approach tends to compartmentalize knowledge. It is not optimal for teaching operational decision-making, and it is costly in time and personnel. The effectiveness of training can be enhanced by designing programs that support the psychological processes involved in learning, retention, retrieval, and application. By building programs that are informed by current work in cognitive science and that utilize modern technological advances, efficient training programs can be created.
Technical Paper

Aviation Data Integration System

A number of airlines have FOQA programs that analyze archived flight data. Although this analysis process is extremely useful for assessing airline concerns in the areas of aviation safety, operations, training, and maintenance, looking at flight data in isolation does not always provide the context necessary to support a comprehensive analysis. To improve the analysis process, the Aviation Data Integration Project (ADIP) has been developing techniques for integrating flight data with auxiliary sources of relevant aviation data. ADIP has developed an aviation data integration system (ADIS) comprised of a repository and associated integration middleware that provides rapid and secure access to various data sources, including weather data, airport operating condition (ATIS) reports, radar data, runway visual range data, and navigational charts.
Technical Paper

Airport Remote Tower Sensor Systems

Remote Tower Sensor Systems are proof-of-concept prototypes being developed by NASA/Ames Research Center (NASA/ARC) with collaboration with the FAA and NOAA. RTSS began with the deployment of an Airport Approach Zone Camera System that includes real-time weather observations at San Francisco International Airport. The goal of this research is to develop, deploy, and demonstrate remotely operated cameras and sensors at several major airport hubs and un-towered airports. RTSS can provide real-time weather observations of airport approach zone. RTSS will integrate and test airport sensor packages that will allow remote access to real-time airport conditions and aircraft status.