Status Report

NASA NEEMO 9 CDR Dave Williams Training Week Journal Sunday, March 26, 2006

By SpaceRef Editor
April 8, 2006
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NASA NEEMO 9 CDR Dave Williams Training Week Journal Sunday, March 26, 2006

Today was our first day of training in our final week before the mission. The crew arrived from Houston and Cincinnati Saturday evening and we did our food shopping for the first few days of training. We are staying in a condo at the National Undersea Research Center (NURC) and the facilities are excellent. NURC is affiliated with the University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW) and runs the Aquarius undersea habitat.

Crew wake-up was at 7 a.m. with an hour for breakfast, e-mail and preparation for the training. Training started at 8 a.m. with Tim, Ron, Nicole and I spending two hours reviewing the Centre for Minimal Access Surgery (CMAS) 3 Ortho experiment. This experiment is to evaluate whether non-physicians and physicians can be given directions from a remote specialist (tele-mentored) to manage broken bones in the lower leg. Instead of using a cast, the crew will use an external fixator, similar to a K’Nex set, to immobilize the broken bones. We then split into two groups with Ron and me learning to set-up the surgical robot while Tim and Nicole learned how to use an ultrasound to look for simulated injuries in the knee. We then switched places and finished off the morning with Mexican food for lunch.

After lunch, the crew got back together to learn about using small robots with small cameras attached that can be inserted into the abdomen to help surgeons see what they are doing as they perform keyhole surgery!! Finishing off the day we were briefed on our Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), an underwater rover that we will drive around the bottom of the ocean to recover simulated samples of moon rocks. Tomorrow promises to be pretty exciting as we start our SCUBA training with the technical diving gear we will use as aquanauts during the mission.

SpaceRef staff editor.