The 128-channel electro-encephalograph, forming part of the
European Space Agency’s Columbus lab, will examine disorders in the
brain area that coordinates complex actions and observe changes in
spatial orientation in the state of weightlessness.
The EEG was developed by the space research team of the
Hungarian Academy of Sciences’ Research Institute for Psychology.
The series of examinations is scheduled to start next October.
The astronauts involved will first practise in the ESA centre of
Cologne. The control tests will be carried out in Moscow’s Star City
just before the astronauts start and after their return.
As a "by-product", the tests are expected to provide valuable
information about how bad sleepers and those with oxygen loss (for
instance workers in high mountains, asthmatics) react to unexpected
Atlantis has been sitting on the launch pad for two months after
two launch attempts were suspended by fuel gauge failures. Its
planned launch on Thursday is threatened by deadly tornadoes
throughout the U.S. South.