Level 1 Spaceflight - Fundamentals

An Introduction to Astronaut Training

This one week, fully immersive training program is designed for anyone interested in training like an Astronaut. This program includes launch and reentry g-forces, micro gravity, mission control operations, crew resource management, Astronaut suit fit and pressurization checks, exploration of foreign surfaces, extravehicular activity (EVA) training using gravity offset equipment, normorbaric chamber, orbital mechanics and flight dynamics, spacecraft docking maneuvers, Lunar/Mars terrain negotiation using rover exploration vehicles, and virtual reality space simulations – just to name a few.  Additionally, SFP’s are trained in accordance to our FAA Safety Approval ensuring a consistent level of spaceflight competency.

Upon completion of our Spaceflight Fundamentals program, participants should:

  • Be knowledgeable on operations, environments and physiological effects associated with spaceflight;
  • Acknowledge and self-correct physiological issues associated with spaceflight;
  • Be able to operate in confined spaces exhibited during short spaceflight durations;
  • Understand operations requiring use of a pressure suit;
  • Exhibit adaptation to, and operate in microgravity;
  • Understand nominal and off nominal conditions during vehicle operations;
  • Demonstrate ability to work within a crew environment under stressful situations.

Program Details

During Level 1, program participants will complete the following courses:

Introduction to the Spaceflight Environment (ENV 100)

This course provides the foundation of knowledge needed to prepare participants for training and spaceflight, including:

  • History of spaceflight from early initiatives to present endeavors to include major milestones and mishaps;
  • Earth’s atmospheric structure as well as radiation principles exhibited in low earth orbit;
  • Basic principles of orbital mechanics to include sub-orbital and orbital flight dynamics;
  • Basic spacecraft systems focusing on life support, propulsion, attitude control, communication and telemetry;
  • Spaceflight mission architecture and Mission Control roles and responsibilities.

Introduction to Spaceflight Physiology (PHY 100)

In this course, participants will gain an understanding of the physiological effects occurring during aircraft and spacecraft flight to include mitigation and self-correction techniques. The following topics will be covered:

  • Review of human anatomy specific to the trainee during aircraft and spacecraft flight;
  • A review of basic gas laws;
  • The physiological divisions of the atmosphere;
  • Altitude physiology and mitigation measures;
  • G-forces, self-imposed stress, motion sickness and potential environmental stressors in conjunction with mitigation steps;
  • Physiological incapacitation and health maintenance as related to the participants.

Introduction to Crew Resource Management (CRM 100)

This course provides fundamental knowledge of human factor issues present during flight and tools for working in a crew environment, including:

  • A brief history on the implementation of CRM through examination of human factors related mishaps;
  • Interpersonal communication;
  • Principles of conflict management, stress management, situational awareness and decision making;
  • Professionalism will also be addressed providing a framework to approach simulations maximizing participant training;

Introduction to Pressure Suits (PPS 100)

This course instructs participants on pressure suit fit, form, and function preparing them for training. The following topics will be covered:

  • Pressure suit hardware at the top assembly level;
  • Associated ancillary items used for comfort;
  • Proper don and doff procedures, suit operations and suit safety precautions;
  • Participant suit sizing evaluation and pressurization check;
  • Participant evaluation for mobility while wearing the pressure suit.

Hypoxia Demonstration and Recovery Training (GT 100)

This course will introduce trainees to physiological effects created by reduced oxygen environments. Participants will garner an understanding of personal hypoxia symptoms and proper self-recovery methods. Hypoxia demonstrations and recovery training will be accomplished in either a hypobaric or normobaric chamber.

Space Flight Dynamics and Control Simulations (GT 101–103)

These courses will exercise the participant’s understanding of principles discussed during Introduction to the Spaceflight Environment and CRM during 3 simulation periods. During simulations the trainee will:

  • Incorporate CRM and problem solving into dynamic simulations;
  • Be immersed in a foreign and dynamic environment using high fidelity mock-ups and virtual reality displays;
  • Will demonstrate vehicle navigation utilizing telemetry and communication systems;
  • Review principles of orbital mechanics, spacecraft reference datum, thruster translation controls and off nominal translation recovery methods;
  • Gain a working knowledge of orbital mechanics with each simulation;
  • Will work in a crew and Mission Control environment;
  • Be exposed to human factors issues exhibited during spaceflight;
  • Garner an understanding of nominal and off-nominal procedure execution;
  • Become familiar with spacecraft system operations.

Pressure Suit Interface and Operations (GT 104 & 105)

These courses will exercise the participant’s understanding of principles discussed during Introduction to the Spaceflight Environment, Introduction to Pressure Suits and CRM during 2 simulation sessions. During simulations trainees will:

  • Incorporate CRM, critical communications and problem solving;
  • Be immersed in a foreign and dynamic environment using high fidelity mock-ups and confined spaces;
  • Become familiar with operating in an enclosed environment;
  • Be exposed to human factors issues exhibited during spaceflight;
  • Garner an understanding of nominal and off-nominal procedure execution;
  • Experience and observe restriction of mobility and visibility while exercising vehicle control operations;
  • Understand unusual attitudes, reduced dexterity, flexibility and mobility during Extra-vehicular Activity (EVA) simulations;
  • Become familiar with human and machine interface issues.

Introduction to Accelerated G-force Adaptation (FT 100)

The course will introduce trainees to high G-force load effects on the human body coupled by stimulation of the vestibular and visual senses as a result of unusual attitudes. During training participants will:

  • Review topics discussed during Introduction to Spaceflight Physiology to include gas laws imposed on the human body, proper mitigation and self-clearing procedures;
  • Review hypoxic experiences during the chamber flight to include the IMSAFE personal checklist;
  • Understand the accelerated G-force flight profile and associated survival equipment used during flight;
  • Be introduced to countermeasures designed to prevent loss of consciousness resulting from accelerated G-force loading;
  • Become familiar with slow and rapid G-force onset in the linear, radial and angular acceleration vectors while exercising physiological G-force countermeasures;
  • Experience gas laws imposed on the human body while exercising proper mitigation and self-clearing procedures.

Introduction to Microgravity Adaptation (FT 101)

This course will introduce participants to micro gravity effects on the human body coupled by stimulation of the vestibular and visual senses as a result of unusual attitudes. During the course trainees will:

  • Review topics discussed during Introduction to Spaceflight Physiology and accelerated G-force flights to include the IMSAFE personal checklist;
  • Review of microgravity translation techniques presented during pressure suit operations;
  • Be introduced to periods of microgravity and demonstrate microgravity operations;
  • Become knowledgeable of physiological effects associated with changes in gravity;
  • Exercise recovery from unusual attitudes and demonstrate proper translation techniques.

Prior to completion of Spaceflight Fundamentals, participants will receive a comprehensive instructor lead review followed by a comprehensive assessment determining level of competency in:

  • Operations, environments and physiological effects associated with spaceflight;
  • Principles of Crew Resource Management;
  • Physiological issues and mitigation techniques associated with spaceflight.