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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

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

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

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

Prediction of Weather Impacts on Airport Arrival Meter Fix Capacity

This paper introduces a data driven model for predicting airport arrival capacity with 2-8 hour look-ahead forecast data. The model is suitable for air traffic flow management by explicitly investigating the impact of convective weather on airport arrival meter fix throughput. Estimation of the arrival airport capacity under arrival meter fix flow constraints due to severe weather is an important part of Air Traffic Management (ATM). Airport arrival capacity can be reduced if one or more airport arrival meter fixes are partially or completely blocked by convective weather. When the predicted airport arrival demands exceed the predicted available airport’s arrival capacity for a sustained period, Ground Delay Program (GDP) operations will be triggered by ATM system.