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EXPERIMENT INFORMATION

Crewmember and Crew-Ground Interactions During International Space Station Missions (96-E096)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Behavior and performance
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Homo sapiens Species: Human

Description
OBJECTIVES:
Space analog studies on Earth and anecdotal reports from space suggest that changes occur in the interpersonal environment of crews during long-duration space missions that affect the ability of the crewmembers to interact safely and productively and to accomplish mission goals. The objectives of this study were to identity and define important interpersonal factors that affect crew performance during International Space Station (ISS) missions.

Specific objectives included:

  1. To characterize changes in crew tension and dysphoria during the mission.
  2. To determine the existence of tension and dysphoria displacement effects in the crew group.
  3. To determine the existence of tension and dysphoria displacement in the outside monitoring group.
  4. To characterize changes in crew cohesion during the mission.
  5. To examine the effect of both the task-oriented and supportive roles of the mission commander on crew cohesion.
  6. To determine whether there is status leveling on the part of the commander during the course of the mission.
  7. To determine whether the perceived importance of language and dialect commonality varies according to the job orientation of the subjects.
  8. To determine whether the perceived importance of dialect commonality is related to language fluency of the ground and crewmember subjects.
  9. To characterize the relationship of crew heterogeneity to crew tension and crew cohesion.
  10. To determine how cultural comfort is related to crew tension and crew cohesion.

Hypotheses were tested by having the crewmembers and personnel in mission control answer a series of questions from three standard mood and interpersonal group climate questionnaires, a critical incident log, and a culture and language questionnaire. The culture and language questionnaire was administered once before each mission. The other measures were completed on a weekly basis before, during, and after each mission. The aim of this study was to evaluate hypotheses related to crew tension, cohesion, leadership, language and culture:

Hypotheses:

  1. Tension and dysphoria in the crew environment will change with the passage of time.
  2. Intra-crew tension and dysphoria will impact on outside monitoring personnel.
  3. Tension and dysphoria in the outside monitoring group will impact management.
  4. Crew cohesion will change with the passage of time.
  5. Task-oriented and supportive leadership roles of the mission commander will relate to crew cohesion.
  6. Changes in the leadership role of the mission commander will occur over time.
  7. The perceived importance of language and dialect will vary according to the subject’s job orientation.
  8. The perceived importance of dialect will vary with the language fluency of the subjects.
  9. Crew heterogeneity will affect crew tension and cohesion.
  10. Culture and language experiences will affect crew tension and cohesion.


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Publications
Boyd JE, Kanas NA, Salnitskiy VP, Gushin VI, Saylor SA, Weiss DS, Marmar CR. Cultural Differences in Crewmembers and Mission Control Personnel During Two Space Station Programs. Aviat Space Environ Med. 2009 Jun;80(6):532-40. [pubmed.gov]

Clement J, Ritsher JB. Operating the ISS: Cultural and leadership challenges. 56th International Astronautical Congress. Fukuoka, Japan. Oct. 17-21, 2005 ;IAC-05-AI.5.05: 11 pp.

Kanas N, Ritsher J, Marmar C, Weiss D, Saylor S. Crewmember and Crew-Ground Interactions during Space Station Missions. Final Report. San Francisco CA, Univeristy of California. Cooperative Agreement No. NCC-0161. 2005.

Kanas N, Ritsher J. Leadership Issues with Multicultural Crews on the International Space Station: Lessons learned from Shuttle/Mir. Acta Astronautica. 2005 ;56:932-936. [pubmed.gov]

Kanas N, Ritsher J. Leadership Issues with Multicultural Crews on the International Space Station: Lessons learned from Shuttle/Mir. Acta Astronautica. 2005 ;56:932-936. 248.[pubmed.gov]

Kanas N. Group interactions during space missions.Aviat Space Environ Med. 2004 Jul; 75(7 Suppl):C3-5. [pubmed.gov]

Kanas NA, Ritsher JB, Saylor SA. Do Psychological Decrements Occur During the 2nd Half of Space Missions? Presented at the 57th International Astronautical Congress. Valencia, Spain. October 2-6, 2006 ;IAC-06-A1.1.02i.

Kanas NA, Salnitskiy VP, Boyd JE, Gushin VI, Weiss DS, Saylor SA, Kozerenko OP, Marmar CR. Crewmember and Mission Control Personnel Interactions During International Space Station Missions. Aviat Space Environ Med. 2007 Jun;78(6):601-7. [pubmed.gov]

Kanas NA, Salnitskiy VP, Ritsher JB, Gushin VI, Weiss DS, Saylor SA, Kozerenko OP, Marmar CR. Human Interactions in Space: ISS vs Shuttle/Mir. 56th International Astronautical Congress. Fukuoka, Japan. Oct. 17-21, 2005; IAC-05-AI.5.02: 8 pp.

Kanas NA, Salnitskiy VP, Ritsher JB, Gushin VI, Weiss DS, Saylor SA, Kozerenko OP, Marmar CR. Psychosocial interactions during ISS missions. Acta Astronautica. 2007 ;60:329-335.

Ritsher JB, Ihle EC, Kanas N. Positive psychological effects of space missions. Acta Astronaut. 2005 Jul-Oct;57(2-8):630-3. [pubmed.gov]

Ritsher JB, Kanas N, Gushin VI, Saylor S. Cultural differences in patterns of mood states on board the International Space Station. 56th International Astronautical Congress. Fukuoka, Japan. Oct. 17-21, 2005 ;IAC-05-AI.5.03: 4 pp.

Ritsher JB, Kanas N, Salnitskiy VP, Gushin VI, Saylor S, Weiss DS, Marmar C. Cultural and Language Backgrounds of International Space Station Program Personnel. Presented at the 57th International Astronautical Congress. Valencia, Spain. October 2-6, 2006 ;IAC-06-A1.1.3.

Ritsher JB. Cultural factors and the International Space Station. Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine. 2005 ;76(6 Suppl):B135-44.[pubmed.gov]

Keywords
Adaptation, psychological
Affect
Communication
Cross-cultural comparison
Cultural characteristics
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Data Information
Data Availability
Archive is complete. Some data sets are online.
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Parameters
Aggression
Anger
Bewilderment
Cohesion
Confusion
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
Expedition 2 03/08/2001 08/22/2001 167 days
Expedition 3 08/10/2001 12/17/2001 129 days
Expedition 4 12/05/2001 06/19/2002 196 days
Expedition 5 06/05/2002 12/07/2002 185 days
Expedition 6 11/23/2002 05/03/2003 161 days
Expedition 7 04/25/2003 10/27/2003 185 days
Expedition 8 10/18/2003 04/29/2004 195 days
Expedition 9 04/18/2004 10/23/2004 188 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
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Alternate Experiment Name
E096
Interactions
NTXN