From Earth to the Stars: Psychological Issues during Space Missions


Wednesday, August 18 2010 - 12:00 pm, PDT
Nick Kanas
Professor of Psychiatry, UC San Francisco

Recent studies on-orbit have provided information on important psychological and interpersonal issues that affect crewmembers and mission control personnel who are involved with near-Earth space missions. However, the extreme distances, communication delays, and increased crewmember autonomy that will characterize missions to Mars and beyond will introduce additional psychosocial stressors never before experienced. Professor Kanas will discuss these stressors and their impact on people traveling to the outer solar system and nearby stars, including those resulting from new technologies, such as traveling at a significant fraction of the speed of light, putting crewmembers in suspended animation, or creating giant self-contained generation ships of colonists who will not return to Earth. Professor Kanas is the author of two books: Space Psychology and Psychiatry and Star Maps: History, Artistry, and Cartography

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