Participants were thoroughly tested after completion of bed rest
The Antarctic Concordia Station
is located in one of the harshest, isolated environments on Earth. Crew members of Concordia that stay all during the cold, dark winter are faced with conditions that in several ways are very similar to what astronauts could endure during a long duration mission, such as a human exploration mission to Mars. A small multicultural crew is confined during a long period of time in an isolated facility with limited resources and located in a harsh and dangerous environment where the communication capabilities in case of an emergency are also limited or inexistent. Autonomy of the crew is required during an extended period of time and living quarters present similarities with that of a space ship: confined environment with limited access to the outside, where specific life support systems are in place to face the harsh atmospheric conditions, limited resources, and where a water recycling and waste management capability is in place. The absent night/daylight variations, with constant light during the summer and constant darkness during the winter, is likely to cause similar problems in the circadian rhythms and sleep architecture as the ones seen in astronauts on the ISS.
ESA offers research opportunities to perform studies in the Concordia station, especially in the field of medicine, physiology and psychology. The team at Concordia is made of up to 16 persons who will be involved in studies performed in various other research fields. From the medicine and operational point of view ESA will test a system for the monitoring of the psycho-physiological status of a crew member and new technologies in the field of tele-medicine and/or tele-diagnostic will benefit the health of crew in a remote isolated and harsh environment as it is at Concordia. Person of contact : Oliver.Angerer@esa.int
Last update: 12 April 2017