Institute of Aerospace Medicine

The Institute of Aerospace Medicine medical research facility :envihab in Cologne
The Institute of Aerospace Medicine medical research facility :envihab in Cologne
Image 1/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

The Institute of Aerospace Medicine medical research facility :envihab in Cologne

The DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine is a world leader in aviation and space medicine. With its one-story, 3500-square-metre, state-of-the-art medical research facility :envihab (from the words ‘Environment’ and ‘Habitat’), the Institute is taking a step forward in its ground-breaking research into the ways in which people adjust to extreme environments and other stressful situations.

Bed rest study at :envihab
Bed rest study at :envihab
Image 2/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

Bed rest study at :envihab

On 25 March 2019, DLR launched AGBRESA (Artificial Gravity Bed Rest Study), the first long-term bed rest study conducted together with the European Space Agency ESA and the US space agency NASA. For the first time, the use of artificial gravity as a possible countermeasure against the negative effects of weightlessness on the human body will be investigated.

 Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities
Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities
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Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities

The Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities are used for ground control experiments under the simulation of evironmental factors of free space and on planetary surfaces. The fully equipped and monitore facilities allow a broad range of tests with biological and chemical material individually or integrated into space hardware. And provide defined and controlled conditions like ultra high vacuum, gas compositions, low and high temperature limits, temperature oscillations, extraterrestrial UV radiation and x-ray. The analysis of these exposure tests contribute to a deeper understanding of the individual and synergistic effects of space with the exposed material. In this way they support the design optimisation and verification of spacecraft devices and the selection of the most promising biological candidates and chemical compositions for flight experiments in low Earth orbit or other space destinations.

Microbiological research
Microbiological research
Image 4/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

Microbiological research

The module M6 Biology lab provides a laboratory environment for microbiological research and an area for medical infrastructure. Topics under investigation will include the analyses of microbial bioburden and biodiversity and the influence humans have on this diversity, as well as aspects of bioregenerative life support systems. Part of the preparation and evaluation of biological space experiments will be performed here.

View inside the control room at :envihab
Control room at :envihab
Image 5/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

Control room at :envihab

View inside the control room at :envihab

envihab – View of the building of the DLR nstitute of Aerospace Medicine
:envihab - Future Research for Space and Earth
Image 6/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

:envihab - Future Research for Space and Earth

The DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine conducts interdisciplinary research into human health and performance in space, in aviation and on Earth. Worldwide unique research facilities like :envihab enable integrative life science research at the highest level.

PET-MRI (Positron Emission Tomography/Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
PET-MRI (Positron Emission Tomography/Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
Image 7/7, Image: DLR (CC-BY 3.0).

PET-MRI (Positron Emission Tomography/Magnetic Resonance Imaging)

Space travel causes a plethora of medical and neurobehavioural problems, including the loss of as much as 25 percent of muscle mass, a loss of bone mass of between 1 and 2 percent per month, weakening of the immune system, impairments of cognitive performance, and other effects related to the highly stressful environment of a space vehicle. In Module 4, :envihab scientists will be able to monitor the physiological changes that could occur during long-term missions. This knowledge, in turn, can be applied to what happens to the body under strenuous conditions encountered on Earth.

The DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine conducts interdisciplinary research into the health and performance of humans in space, in aviation and on the ground. Globally unique research facilities such as :envihab allow the highest level of integrated scientific research. Biological, medical and psychological research examines the effect of environmental conditions on the basic mechanisms of human health, living conditions and human performance. The research results and technological innovations are directly implemented into psychological and biomedical applications.

The Institute regularly offers the opportunity to participate in a study as a test person.

Contact
  • Herr Prof. Dr. med. Jens Jordan
    Institute director
    German Aerospace Center (DLR)
    DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine
    Telephone: +49 2203 601 3115
    Fax: +49 2203-695211
    Sportallee  54a
    22335 Hamburg
    Contact
  • PD Dr. rer. nat. Ruth Hemmersbach
    Acting Head of the Institute, Head of the Department of Gravitational Biology
    German Aerospace Center (DLR)
    DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine
    Telephone: +49 2203 601-3094
    Sportallee  54a
    22335 Hamburg
    Contact
Time-lapse video: building the globally unique :envihab research facility
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