ECLSS and Space Agriculture
Environmental Control and Life Support Systems (ECLSS) are essential to guarantee an optimal management and reuse of water, foods, waste in Space. Applications include water treatment on Earth and CO2 capture and utilization. Other activities focus on designing new cultivation techniques for vertical and greenhouse factories and food production technologies in Space.
Among different programs related to AR/VR to undertake training sessions, V-MARS has the main goal of providing a practical testbed for field operation studies to prepare human-crewed missions to Mars and Moon. The program foresees an immersive virtual reality simulation of the Mars City Station. The program includes the development of VR treadmills which are currently distributed under the trademark Mars Virtual Systems.
Energy and Isru
It aims to achieve adequate power generation and storage in Mars and Moon replicated conditions. It must demonstrate sustained and robust performances at least over the reference surface mission's lifespan. The output is to assess long term performances of In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) technologies, including Sabatier reactors for Mars.
Space Medicine plays a crucial role in improving the understanding of human health in Space and how to treat potential illnesses. As a branch of Space Medicine, Telemedicine will disrupt both Space and on Earth health services. It will be focused on interactions with telecommunication systems and healthcare protocols for crewed missions. Special attention will be given to astronauts training, emerging technologies as 5G, long-distance communication system as well as medical devices for Space usage.
The research aims to define crew safety, health, and productivity, Figures of Merit (FoM), and human factors standard requirements and specifications for human exploration of Space. It includes reviews of habitats design, construction, and testing to assess compliance with human performance-based standards.
Hardware and automation are essential for Space exploration and colonization. It regards surface exploration suits, rovers, hardware components, tools development, with a special focus on swarm robotics and robotics for short-range Extravehicular Activities.
Within a complete simulation environment of the command, control & communication system, the research provides the possibility of identifying breakthrough management concepts and technology to support interfaces, information flow and sharing, management, control, operations, procedures, and human-machine interfaces in Space.
3D printing and Materials
3D printing techniques are crucial for approaching Space: the interest is focused on objects necessary for autonomous living and production of technical parts. To use 3D printers in Space is essential to guarantee a long term human settlement. The research field includes simulation of the most relevant physical-chemical regenerative and bio-regenerative life support systems through material science.
The ecological aspect of Space exploration is assessed for multidisciplinary objectives. The research aims to effectively validate procedures that incorporate Planetary Protection in sample collection and bio-material storage to study life in Space.