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Centrifuge Vibration Team Awarded Space Flight Awareness Team Award
(Apr 23, 2009)
The Centrifuge Vibration Team, including several researchers from the Human Systems Integration Division, was awarded with the Space Flight Awareness Team Award.

NASA’s Space Flight Awareness (SFA) program has played an important role in human spaceflight safety for over 40 years beginning with the Apollo Program. It has served as one of NASA’s best incentives in recognizing exemplary achievements in quality, safety, and mission success.

SFA has recognized the exceptional achievements of civil servants and contractors who have made significant contributions to the space shuttles’ safe return to flight and in sustaining the International Space Station and our expedition crews. Throughout the challenges of the past few years, SFA has permeated NASA’s human spaceflight program with a renewed and strengthened consciousness of the importance of teamwork, excellence, and diligence to flight safety.

In this particular study, the Centrifuge Vibration Team investigated crew ability to read and process alphanumeric symbology - a fundamental requirement for maintaining crew operational capability - while observers were subjected to 12 Hz vibration superimposed on the 3.8 G loading expected for the thrust oscillation period of ascent. Two age-matched groups of participants (16 general population and 13 Crew Office) performed a speeded digit-processing task while undergoing sustained 3.8 G loading and whole-body vibration at 0, 0.15, 0.3, 0.5, and 0.7 g in the eyeballs in/out (x-axis) direction. The time-constrained reading task used an Orion-like display with 10- and 14-pt non-proportional sans-serif fonts.

Compared to the no-vibration baseline, we found no significant effect of vibration at 0.15 and 0.30 g on task error rates (ER) or response time (RT). Significant degradation in both ER and RT, however, were observed at 0.5 and 0.7 g for 10-pt, and at 0.7 g for 14-pt font digits. These vibration-related impacts on objective performance were mirrored by participants' subjective ratings. The results from this empirical study provide initial guidance for evaluating the display readability tradespace between text-font size and vibration amplitude.

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Curator: Phil So
NASA Official: Jessica Nowinski
Last Updated: September 11, 2023