Aquarius Becomes Home For Astronauts to Train for Outer Space
An underwater ocean laboratory, Aquarius located in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary would be home to astronaut Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburgerm who would be spending over two week on the floor of Atlantic Ocean.
The laboratory is deployed three and half miles offshore, at a depth of 60 feet. It is owned by NOAA and is operated by the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Dottie would be a part of a four member team that arrived at the laboratory on Monday.
The main aim of this procedure would be to replicate the conditions that the astronauts would undergo in orbit. This team would be taking part in NEEMO (NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations) and would be living in isolation to come to terms with the conditions. They would be using life supporting gear and told that would help them get accustomed to zero gravity environment.
Metcalf-Lindenburger said, “It is a really good opportunity to work together in an extreme environment, much like space, with life support systems, power sources and all the things we need to keep us alive”. Accompanying Metcalf would be planetary scientist Steven Squyres, from Cornell University; British astronaut Timothy Peake, with the European Space Agency; and astronaut Kimiya Yui, with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.