TECH BYTE: How Tech is Used for Astronaut Training
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (WDEF) — Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, we’ll all be quarantined for awhile, but some scientists do it on a regular basis as part of their job.
Technology is out of this world – literally!
It has to be used to get our astronauts up into space safely and cost effectively.
Before they can even go up, astronauts have to go through rigorous training, and that means being in a simulator.
Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley will be flying SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, which will take them to the International Space Station.
They’re the first American astronauts going to the ISS from the U.S. since 2011.
This mission is part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
These astronauts spent hundreds of hours in the flight simulator to practice launching and docking the Crew Dragon.
You even can try out an ISS docking simulator for yourself here: https://iss-sim.spacex.com/.
NASA says the spacecraft’s system uses touchscreens and physical manual control options.
The astronauts can use the touchscreens with or without their high tech spacesuit gloves.
The gloves, of course, are touchscreen compatible, and pair well with the custom-made spacesuits.
The suits are lightweight, and protect the astronauts from potential depressurization.
They also have a flame-resistant outer layer, and even route communications and cooling systems while the astronauts are flying.
The helmets are made using a 3D printer.
Behnken and Hurley are spending their last two weeks before liftoff in a routine preflight quarantine to make sure they’re healthy, and protect others already at the ISS once they get there.
They’re expected to launch on May 27 at 4:33 p.m. from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Space exploration has come a long way since the 1960s.
If you’d like to follow this upcoming mission, go here: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/commercial/crew/index.html.