The Space Architect's Diary #003

Water Recovery Systems in Space

Below are some of my key takeaways and thoughts from the Future Space Medicine Conference:

– 𝗕𝗲𝗵𝗮𝘃𝗶𝗼𝗿𝗮𝗹 𝗔𝗱𝗮𝗽𝘁𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 of the brain in a space environment & altered gravity becomes more challenging to human health

– 𝗚𝗿𝗮𝘃𝗶𝘁𝘆 𝗶𝘀 𝗮 𝗦𝗲𝗻𝘀𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗦𝗶𝗴𝗻𝗮𝗹. The Human brain encodes gravity mainly through the Vestibular System. In an upright position, the gravity receptors, Otoliths, are balanced on a gel-like fluid & perpendicular to gravity’s force. With head shifts, the fluid shifts, which triggers the Otoliths to move, causing the hair cells in the fluid to respond & send an action potential signal to the brain to allow the body to react to the change

– Vision, Somatic, Visceral, & proprioception systems also provide sensory information to inform the brain about gravity

𝗕𝗿𝗮𝗶𝗻 𝗦𝘁𝗿𝘂𝗰𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗲 𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲𝘀
– In Space changes occur due to the shift of fluids & blood into the head. The fluid shift causes the compression of the brain, which induces reduced connectivity. One example is the Insula which receives critical information from the Vestibular system and is an essential component of the pain matrix

𝗕𝗲𝗵𝗮𝘃𝗶𝗼𝗿𝗮𝗹 𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲𝘀
– The Space Adaptation Syndrome effect 80% of Astronauts, especially in the first hours to Weeks of the mission, and could cause perceptual illusion, disorientation, & deterioration in performance

– The effect of Space in Space and reduced gravity also cause Sensory-motor alterations. Affected sensory motors: proprioception, vision, Balance, Coordination, Locomotion, Posture, Grip Force, eye-hand, & eye-head coordination

– Cognition; Cognitive abilities, psychological & psychosocial behaviors are affected

𝗣𝗮𝗶𝗻 𝗥𝗲𝗰𝗲𝗽𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻
– Lab studies have shown changes in head position, upright to a Head Down Bed Rest (HDBR) or change of environmental parameters like performing in VR, earth G vs Mars G, show that the altered position & environment causes an analgesic effect. Participants are also prone to performing less random, more monotonous tasks & are more tolerant of risk

– There is no data on how the medication affects the body & how astronauts perceive if the medicine is working

– No Data on Pharmacokinetic rates. Rate of & how the medication gets absorbed, distributed, metabolized, and excreted

– No Data on Pharmacodynamics and no understanding of how drugs act on the body in extreme space environments. Example; Paracetamol absorption rate in a space environment increases on day two and gets back to normal on day four. Such fluctuation with potent medicine like blood clotting will prove highly harmful & even deadly

– Astropharmacy maturity for astronaut health is severely lagging behind commercial flight advancement

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