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Hand Posture Analyzer (HPA)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Muscle physiology
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Homo sapiens Species: Human

Hand Posture Analyzer (HPA) examined the way hand and arm muscles are used differently during grasping and reaching tasks in weightlessness. Measurements were compared to those taken before and after flight to improve the understanding of the effects of long-duration space flight on muscle fatigue.

The Hand Posture Analyzer (HPA) system is designed to collect kinematic and force data on human upper limbs (hands, wrists and forearms) onboard the International Space Station (ISS). Kinematics is the science of motion. In human movement, it is the study of the positions, angles, velocities, and accelerations of body segments and joints during motion. The kinematic studies on the movement of the hand and wrist in microgravity, collected while manipulating both virtual and concrete objects, was researched to assess the approaching, reaching, and grasping mechanics of the hand and fingers without the effect of gravity. Also, a fatigue assessment of the forearm was done to determine how the control of grip force was affected by the exposure to weightlessness.

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Pinch strength
Hand strength
Feedback, sensory

Data Information
Data Availability
Archive is complete. No data sets are available for this experiment. Please Contact LSDA if you know of available data for this investigation.

Bending angles
Force control
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
Expedition 7 04/25/2003 10/27/2003 185 days
Expedition 8 10/18/2003 04/29/2004 195 days

Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Johnson Space Center (JSC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Johnson Space Center LSDA Office
Project Manager: Pamela A. Bieri
Institutional Support
Italian Space Agency (ASI)
Proposal Date