The NASTAR(R) Center, the premier commercial space training and research center in the world, has completed the initial phase of a research effort focused on commercial human spaceflight and systems development related to emergency detection and response using an Atlas V flight profile, under a contract with Special Aerospace Service (SAS) on August 16, 2010.

SAS used the capabilities of NASTAR Center’s unique Space Training Simulator (STS-400) to accurately simulate the ascent G accelerations of an Atlas V rocket in Atlas 402 configuration. Nominal scenarios were performed with three subjects in order to understand crew reaction times. Subjects are medically monitored and tested at NASTAR Center. One subject, Jeff Ashby, is a former NASA Space Shuttle commander.

Under current funded efforts with NASA’s Commercial Crew Development (CCDev) program, SAS is supporting United Launch Alliance’s Emergency Detection System (EDS) development program. EDS is the key technology to enable use of the flight-proven Atlas V and Delta IV fleet as part of a potential ‘crewed’ launch system for commercial spaceflight. The Emergency Detection System monitors key systems parameters and provides warnings and crew instructions on failures. Several potential crewed space craft providers are interested in using the Atlas V with their spacecraft.

The NASTAR Center has trained over 220 spaceflight participants and researchers for upcoming commercial space flights. NASTAR’s space training programs are safety approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Brienna Henwood, Director of Space Training Programs and Research at the NASTAR Center remarked, “We are proud to team with SAS on this high profile research opportunity. The data and information collected will provide insight for commercial space players as to how the Atlas V can be used to provide safe, reliable flights.”

“The data collected exceeded our expectations. The flight profiles and simulated launch and flight duration experiences were in family with existing human rated launch systems. STS will utilize this crucial data to provide better crew interaction times with ULA’s EDS and offer system solutions for future spacecraft”, said Tim Bulk, Director of Technical Operations for Special Aerospace Services.

About NASTAR Center

The National AeroSpace Training And Research (NASTAR(R)) Center is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Environmental Tectonics Corporation (ETC(R)). NASTAR Center is a state-of the art aerospace training, research, and educational facility dedicated to improving the health and safety of humans in extreme environments. NASTAR Center serves military aviation (fixed and rotary wing), civil aviation (fixed and rotary wing), space travel (government and private) and provides research support for component and human factors testing.


Brienna Henwood
215-355-9100 ext. 1504