Earlier this month, European Space Agency astronaut Luca Parmitano conducted validation tests on-orbit and wore the Astroskin garment and headband connected to the data unit for his first 72-hour monitoring experience.
Luca Parmitano also conducted maintenance operations for the Astroskin / Bio-Monitor that was deployed on the ISS orbiting lab, last December by Canadian Astronaut David Saint-Jacques.
Although the ISS is equipped with health and life sciences research tools, the existing instrumentation for continuous and simultaneous recording of several physiological parameters was lacking. To address this issue, the Canadian Space Agency's Bio-Monitor Commissioning activity uses the Astroskin / Bio-Monitor system; a complete vital signs monitoring platform coupled with a wearable garment capable of monitoring relevant physiological parameters in a non-invasive and non-interfering way during a normal day in space.
The physiological parameters which can be monitored consist of blood pressure, peripheral blood oxygen saturation, 3-lead ECG, respiration, skin temperature, and activity, will help push further our understanding of Vascular aging and Human Physiology in space.
Venturing into the environment of space, microgravity can have negative effects on the human body. When astronauts return to Earth, their carotid arteries, which carry blood to the head and neck, appear to have aged 20 to 30 years. Artery walls become stiffer and thicker in space, the same as when people grow older on Earth.
“You can take extremely healthy, fit astronauts and put them in an environment that restricts their ability to do daily exercise, and they run the risk of developing insulin resistance that on Earth could lead to Type II diabetes,” said principal investigator Richard L. Hughson of Schlegel-University of Waterloo in Ontario
Now operational the Astroskin Bio-Monitor system is available for the next five years to conduct Health research in Space for all participating countries to the International Space Station.
Sometimes you wear the experiment: the Bio-Monitor smart shirt system measures vital signs like temperature, heart rate, respiration and movement, and transmits the data to a tablet application. #MissionBeyond @csa_asc pic.twitter.com/2h6lmRUyHH— Luca Parmitano (@astro_luca) 19 août 2019
Since 2006, Hexoskin’s mission is to develop sensors and health data infrastructure to generate clinical grade real-world evidence. The Astroskin demonstrates once again Hexoskin’s leadership in providing the industry leading sensors, software, and AI to push further our understanding of human physiology on earth and in space.