Making Trips to Mars More Tolerable (The Washington Post)


Researchers at Dartmouth’s Digital Arts Leadership and Innovation (DALI) Lab are developing ways to use virtual reality to help address the psychological strain put on astronauts during long-duration space missions, reports The Washington Post.

The first step in the project, explains the Post, is to build thetypes of generic experiences (hanging out at the beach, walking through the woods, or viewing beautiful scenery) that just about anyone would find relaxing.”

Jay Buckey, a professor of medicine at the Geisel School of Medicine and a former astronaut, is among those working on the project. “Recent data suggest that exposure to natural settings can be used for relaxation, and to relieve cognitive fatigue,” he tells the newspaper. “These findings form the basis for attention restoration theory, which proposes that exposure to nature provides a fascinating and relaxing environment that allows directed attention mechanisms to recover.”

Read the full story, published 10/23/14 by The Washington Post.

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