Format

Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Aviat Space Environ Med. 2010 Sep;81(9):819-24.

Cognitive demand of human sensorimotor performance during an extended space mission: a dual-task study.

Author information

1
Institute of Physiology and Anatomy, German Sport University, 50927 Cologne, Germany. bock@dshs-koeln.de

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Two previous single-case studies found that the dual-task costs of manual tracking plus memory search increased during a space mission, and concluded that sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may be related to cognitive overload. Since dual-task costs were insensitive to the difficulty of memory search, the authors argued that the overload may reflect stress-related problems of multitasking, rather than a scarcity of specific cognitive resources. Here we expand the available database and compare different types of concurrent task.

METHODS:

Three subjects were repeatedly tested before, during, and after an extended mission on the International Space Station (ISS). They performed an unstable tracking task and four reaction-time tasks, both separately and concurrently. Inflight data could only be obtained during later parts of the mission.

RESULTS:

The tracking error increased from pre- to in flight by a factor of about 2, both under single- and dual-task conditions. The dual-task costs with a reaction-time task requiring rhythm production was 2.4 times higher than with a reaction-time task requiring visuo-spatial transformations, and 8 times higher than with a regular choice reaction-time task.

CONCLUSIONS:

Long-term sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may reflect not only stress, but also a scarcity of resources related to complex motor programming; possibly those resources are tied up by sensorimotor adaptation to the space environment.

PMID:
20824987
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Support Center