Boards.ie uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Click here to find out more x
Post Reply  
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
16-02-2015, 21:20   #1
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
Psychology in confined spaces: Mars One applicants, etc.

Earlier today, I read that the Mars One mission has narrowed its potential list of candidates down to 100 people.

The MO team seem to be mostly those with experience in marketing, communications, enterprise, physics and medicine. Those in advisory roles are more so from scientific background. As an aside, one bloke is listed as an expert in space law - how cool is that? Call in Capt. Jean Luc Picard.

Anyway, this got me thinking about the psychological dynamics and issues that might come into play in this sort of setting. Or rather, the level of psychological preparedness that might be required before hand. Presumably, professional astronauts are screened pretty closely at all stages of training. I read an interview with Commander Chris Hadfield who said he learned some basic medical skills in an A&E department and I'd imagine coping skills have to come into things, too. No doubt that NASA has a few psychologists attached to its operations. A quick search brings up an old interview with Katie Olsen who is a behavioral neuroendocrinologist and the piece gives some idea of what factors come into play. More recently, Kathryn Keeton gives some information in her bio.

Space must bring up all sorts of potential issues - isolation, limited ability to move around, personality clashes, extended periods of time away from typical social connections, down time, crew safety and risk, etc.

For those of you with more in-depth knowledge of psychology, how would these or other issues be assessed in screening? Here are some of the characteristics that MO are looking for. Undoubtedly there are lessons that can be learned from previous space flights and military applications, though I think MO comes from the civilian world.

Maybe I should go off and read this.
The Black Oil is offline  
(3) thanks from:
Advertisement
17-02-2015, 07:32   #2
JuliusCaesar
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 4,776
'sfunny you should bring this up!

I had been reading some of the blogs and articles by people involved in the Mars simulation:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HI-SEAS


http://www.theatlantic.com/technolog...-crazy/360034/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flashli...search_Station

http://aeon.co/magazine/psychology/w...about-boredom/

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-...952952/?no-ist


Conversely, and in other interests, but allied to the above, is research on physical exercise and mood, especially exercise in the open air, in nature - whether in parks or out in the countryside or by the sea. It seems that exercise in natural surroundings is more beneficial than indoor (gym) exercise. This is of course more related to my everyday work than Space Psychology, but it seems related - humans are made for the natural world, here on Planet Earth. So reaching for the stars is going to be a lot more interesting than was first thought.

Yeah, nerdy or what?!

Last edited by JuliusCaesar; 17-02-2015 at 07:37.
JuliusCaesar is offline  
Thanks from:
18-02-2015, 15:32   #3
Valmont
Registered User
 
Valmont's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 5,551
Thanks for all the links you two, I've been dying to learn some more about this since I read all the Mars One stuff in the news this week. Who knows, maybe a background in psychology could be grounds for getting one into space?

EDIT: Only an astronaut could afford the book on space psychology!

Last edited by Valmont; 18-02-2015 at 15:53.
Valmont is offline  
01-03-2015, 21:17   #4
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
Yeah, the price is mad.

Thanks for the links - had been wondering about the simulations. It must be similar to being off getting polar ice samples in Antarctica for extended periods, and the like.

Wherever the lines of fact and fiction intersect, it must be sad to be up there now following the passing of Leonard Nimoy.
The Black Oil is offline  
Thanks from:
29-03-2015, 14:29   #5
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
Well, an Irish applicant has been rather critical.

Elsewhere, some NASA astronauts are off on the longest trip/time spent in space.

Think it's time I emailed both M/O and NASA about psychology.
The Black Oil is offline  
Advertisement
23-12-2016, 11:07   #6
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
Heard a thing about memory the other day, linked to the Challenger disaster. A study by Ulric Neisser.

Quote:
The day after the Challenger disaster he asked Emory University undergrads to write a description of how they heard of the disaster – the time of day, what they were doing, how they felt about it, etc. Neisser then asked the same students the same set of questions two and a half years later and compared the two descriptions. He found three things. First, the memories of the students had dramatically changed: “twenty-five percent of the students’ subsequent accounts were strikingly different from their original journal entries. More than half the people had lesser degrees of error, and less than ten percent had all the details correct.” Second, people were usually confident that the accounts they provided two and a half years later were accurate. And third, “when confronted with their original reports, rather than suddenly realizing that they had misremembered, they often persisted in believing their current memory.”
More about other memory events here.
The Black Oil is offline  
Thanks from:
30-03-2017, 19:50   #7
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
Would have thought this was already being done, but I suppose it's not as if there's hundreds of astronauts, constantly on rotation. Caveat with the below is the findings are speculative.

Quote:
Travelling in space can play havoc with the human mind. Because of micro-gravity, astronauts frequently experience weird sensory effects, such as the world suddenly appearing upside down. Even their ability to rotate objects in their mind’s eye is sometimes affected. A new open-access study in the journal Microgravity is the first to explore the structural brain changes caused by spaceflight and which may contribute to, or reflect, these and other sensory and cognitive effects.

Vincent Koppelmans and his colleagues, including Jacob Bloomberg at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, compared brain scans taken of 27 astronauts before a space mission with a second scan taken once they were back on earth. The results revealed a mix of shrinkage and enlargement across the brain. There were widespread reductions in grey matter as well as some more localised increases in grey matter in regions that are involved in sensory processing and motor control.

https://digest.bps.org.uk/2017/03/09...ain-structure/
The Black Oil is offline  
Thanks from:
29-07-2019, 22:27   #8
The Black Oil
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 13,926
A tribute, basically.

Quote:
https://www.thelancet.com/journals/l...568-5/fulltext
On July 20, 1969, after a fraught 13 minutes of final descent, Apollo 11's commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin Jr made their historic first landing on the surface of the Moon. The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) estimates that all-told 400 000 people were involved in that effort. The Project Apollo workforce had laboured tirelessly to achieve the goal set by US President John F Kennedy in 1961 of getting a human crew to the surface of the Moon and back before the end of the decade. Project Apollo saw state-of-the-art science, technology, and engineering applied to enable what was arguably the most ambitious feat of exploration in the history of our species. The flight of Apollo 11 had been preceded by a fierce schedule of testing, which had seen newly developed space craft and technology launched and tested in orbit around the Earth and Moon.
And from 2014 re sleep.

Quote:
https://www.thelancet.com/journals/l.../fulltextSpace is one of the most hostile environments. Sufficient sleep duration and quality are crucial to ensure performance and prevent fatal errors and accidents in space. Data on astronauts' sleep in space are scarce, but in The Lancet Neurology, Laura Barger and colleagues 1
report findings from their study assessing 4267 days of actigraphically measured sleep in 85 astronauts during Space Shuttle or International Space Station (ISS) missions.
Any article that describes the hostility of space gets an automatic thumbs up from me due to the filmesque narration sound of that remark!

Last edited by The Black Oil; 29-07-2019 at 22:35.
The Black Oil is offline  
Thanks from:
Post Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Remove Text Formatting
Bold
Italic
Underline

Insert Image
Wrap [QUOTE] tags around selected text
 
Decrease Size
Increase Size
Please sign up or log in to join the discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



Share Tweet