Japanese space agency, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), is offering members of the public the chance to earn money while it runs tests. People can earn 380,000 yen or $3,500 to live for two weeks in a simulated space station.
The experiment is set to mimic the environment in space.
14 Days And 13 Nights
JAXA is looking for eight people to spend 14 days and 13 nights inside of a space station on Earth that is set to mimic real space conditions. Scientists are trying to gather more information on accurate stress markers for astronauts who must be confined for long periods in space.
Those who are selected will be locked at the Tsukuba Space Center. The participants will have none of their personal belongings and will be asked to perform various tasks. During the performance, their stress levels will be measured. The tasks are set to simulate conditions on the International Space Station.
To qualify for the study, people will have to be between the ages of 20 to 55 and be in good health. After the study, those who took place will be given $3,500. Information for the study is published in Japanese, but it doesn't restrict people living outside of Japan from applying.
Spending long periods in microgravity can be detrimental to humans. Many changes take place in the human body. These include weakening of muscles and bones, confusion in the sense of up and down, changes in eye pressure, disruption in the proprioceptive system, etc.
The proprioceptive system controls the sense of the relative position of one's own body parts and the strength needed for movement. Being in space, astronauts can lose track of the orientation of body parts like their arms. This can make them sick for days after arriving in space.
Isolation from their everyday life also causes stress. JAXA's experiment works to analyze how living in a confined environment can affect people's stress level.
To create microgravity on Earth, NASA uses free fall. Whenever an object is in free fall that means it is traveling at the same speed as the vessel it is traveling in. NASA uses airplanes flying in a parabolic arc to create these tests. While these conditions can be simulated for a short time, its effects can still be studied.
It isn't clear whether or not the participants in the study will get to feel weightlessness, but they will feel what it's like to be confined to a small structure with strangers.