Dynamic modeling to assess hip loading for martian space exploration

Dava Newman, Grant Schaffner, Z. Maria Oden, Christopher B Ruff, Thomas Beck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Astronaut performance of locomotion and falls in a partial gravity environment similar to Mars (3/8 G) was simulated. An astronaut loping in Mars gravity while wearing a space suit was modeled. Preliminary calculating of factor of risk indicate that both locomotion and falls have a significant fracture risk level following long-term space flight if bone loss occurs at the rates currently observed in space flight studies (1-2% bone mineral density loss per month). This applies to astronauts performing activities on Mars following a 6-12 month journey in weightlessness, and to astronauts performing activities on Earth following 6 months or more of weightlessness. Given the significant level of fracture risk associated with both traumatic activities (falls) and activities of daily living (locomotion) for astronauts, there exists a serious need for countermeasures to bone loss associated with weightlessness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering

Cite this

Newman, D., Schaffner, G., Oden, Z. M., Ruff, C. B., & Beck, T. (2000). Dynamic modeling to assess hip loading for martian space exploration. Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 28(SUPPL. 1).