Deliverables for Exploration

The Smart Medical Systems and Technology Team's principal goal is to develop medical care systems that would assist in the diagnosis and treatment of major illnesses and trauma, as well as to provide sensors and data systems for in-flight monitoring and early detection of medical problems during flight and on planetary surfaces. A secondary goal is to provide novel training tools and modalities for crews to address medical issues when contact with Earth is limited or delayed.

The Teamís anticipated deliverables for spaceflight include:
  • Just-in-time training of International Space Station personnel to perform complex ultrasound diagnostic testing;
  • An ultrasound-based, acoustic densitometer for real-time assessment of bone quality and density, and an image-guided therapeutic system for assessing fracture risk and accelerating healing;
  • An onboard catalog of ultrasound images of internal organs under microgravity conditions;
  • A therapeutic ultrasound device with the capability to treat a variety of conditions, such as uncontrolled internal bleeding and kidney-stone-induced obstruction;
  • Integration of a robust mobile database with portable, lightweight medical systems to care for critically ill patients;
  • Novel technology development to reduce the size of spaceflight medical oxygen concentrators;
  • A lab-on-a-chip system for in-flight measurement of blood samples to determine the number of white blood cells and the percentage of each type of white blood cell; and
  • A noninvasive sensor system to measure muscle metabolic parameters to diagnose trauma, assess astronaut fitness and provide real-time metabolic rate monitoring during surface exploration or spacewalks.

The Onboard Proficiency Enhancement training program teaches non-physician astronauts to obtain diagnostic quality ultrasound images. This slide shows the correct cardiac scanning position.