Private industries worldwide are currently developing commercial spaceflight capabilities by building reusable space vehicles for suborbital and orbital flight. This necessitates the availability of affordable non-pilot astronaut training for private spaceflight. Such commercial astronauts' functions will include operating industrial and research payloads, flight crew duties, preparation of tourists for space excursions, and - looking into the more distant future - preparing all of the above categories of spaceflight professionals for long duration voyages including training in such factors as high G, G transitions, and artificial gravity environments.
Conducting scientific experiments in parabolic flight onboard NASA's KC-135 reduced gravity aircraft.
Based on our long-standing involvement in space research and employing unique research facilities at the Ashton Graybiel Spatial Orientation Laboratory, we have developed several programs for training commercial and research astronauts for private spaceflight missions. These programs train in such sensorimotor human factors as motion sickness, spatial disorientation and movement errors, spatial illusions, and artificial gravity/rotating environment. Implementation of these protocols will maximize commercial spaceflight efficiency, productivity and comfort, as well as enhance flight enjoyment of space tourists.
In parabolic flight onboard NASA's C9 reduced gravity aircraft.