February Meeting

Time: Saturday, February 11, 7 p.m.

Place: Avonport, 475 Bluff Road

Speaker: Laura McLarnon

Topic: Space Medicine: A History and Look Ahead

Prolonged periods of weightlessness produce numerous detrimental effects such as muscle and bone loss, vestibular disturbances, cardiovascular and haematological changes. Some of these effects are irreversible. The early space program was a race to the Moon. NASA developed an aggressive, step by step program where each program built on the success of the previous one. Most physiological effects of microgravity were expected to a certain degree. Data needed to be gathered to further explore the effects of microgravity in order to build countermeasures to ensure the safe return of each and every astronaut. I will discuss the physiological effects of space flight and the countermeasures that have been implemented. I will also look ahead to a possible Mars mission and the new challenges ahead.
The Management has arranged a full Moon for this weekend, so if you might be parking next door at Roy & Gertrude’s home (#465), moonlight will light your way along the adjoining path after the meeting. The Management has also kindly shifted a penumbral lunar eclipse one day early so as not to coincide with the MAG meeting, ensuring full moonlight Saturday evening. (At 20:44 AST Friday, nearly all of the Moon will be within Earth’s penumbral shadow, making moonlight only about half as bright as from a normal full Moon.)

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