NASA Human Research program: Human Health and Performance for Space Exploration


NASA Human Research program: Human Health and Performance for Space Exploration

About the Speaker

Dr. Fogarty is the NASA Human Research Program (HRP) Chief Scientist. As HRP Chief Scientist, Jennifer works with the HRP Elements on the development and oversight of the HRP research portfolio addressing the diverse human system risks that need to be characterized and mitigated to enable human exploration of space. This role requires communication and collaboration with current flight Programs, International Partners, as well as developmental spaceflight Programs that will be implementing risk reduction strategies based on the standards and requirements developed and informed by HRP research and risk mitigation strategies. In addition, Jennifer establishes and maintains relationships and collaborations with external institutions and other government agencies to assess fundamental mechanistic discoveries as well as cutting edge prevention and treatment strategies. Before taking on this leadership role in the HRP, Jennifer was the Translational Scientist for NASA Space and Clinical Operations Division in the Human Health and Performance Directorate. Jennifer facilitated communication, project development, and Program interactions between the operations and research communities. She identified candidates for the transition to operations process that will reduce risk and resource utilization with overall goal of preserving astronaut health during and after missions. Previously, Jennifer was the Open Collaboration and Innovation Manager responsible for developing and maturing collaborations and applying tools such as technical gap analysis and open innovation to further research, enhance clinical resources, and facilitate technology development.

Dr. Fogarty received a PhD from Texas A&M University System Health Science Center. She is currently on the editorial team for the Fundamentals of Aerospace Medicine 5th edition, regularly lectures on space physiology and human system risk management, and has continued interacting with the research and technology development community through NASA’s Human Health and Performance Center and the Human Research Program.


Download NASA Human Research program: Human Health and Performance for Space Exploration (PDF) (6.3 MB)


The humans that will explore the far reaches of space will experience unprecedented biological, physiological, and psychological challenges brought on by extreme environmental exposures. The NASA Huma Research Program pursues research that characterizes the effects of these hazardous exposures and is responsible for developing and validating mitigation strategies that reduce the risk to the humans and the mission. In my presentation I will describe the hazards of spaceflight including the exposure to altered gravity fields, a closed environment, isolation and confinement, and galactic cosmic radiation. I will also discuss that while humans are extremely adaptable, these exposures could lead to significant health and performance decrements during the mission and later in life long after the mission is complete. The NASA Human Research Program refers to these decrements as human system risks and uses this construct to describe our portfolio of work. I will also describe how we continue to do surveillance of the experience during human spaceflight to enable the identification of new and emerging risks. The final piece of the presentation will provide an overview of how the NASA Human Research Program interacts with researchers from academia and industry.


Media is loading

Publication Date



Grand Forks, ND

NASA Human Research program: Human Health and Performance for Space Exploration