Aerospace Medicine

UTMB offers combined Internal Medicine residency tracks with the department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health in both General Preventive Medicine and Aerospace Medicine tracks. Through partnership with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) at Johnson Space Center, UTMB is proud to be the home of the only Aerospace/Internal Medicine combined residency in the United States.

Residents from our combined program are trained to provide medical support for populations exposed to unusual or extreme environments and to be knowledgeable about the physical and engineering aspects of the flight environment, with a focus on the physiology of high G-stress, hyper- and hypobaric environments, and radiation exposure.

What's Happening Now:

UTMB is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation to investigate how persons with differing levels of centrifuge familiarization training will respond psychologically to the forces of acceleration that are experienced during a typical commercial spaceflight. This is a new frontier in medicine. In partnership with the National Aerospace Training and Research (NASTAR) Center centrifuge facility in Southampton, Pennsylvania, our residents are investigators at the cutting edge of their field.

Residents are gaining first-hand experience with the practice of medicine in austere environments. Through cooperation with the United States Antarctic Program, residents provide on-site medical care to workers at McMurdo Station in Antarctica. This experience also offers the opportunity to participate in aeromedical evacuations and experience high altitude at the South Pole.

    Program Objectives

  • Train and prepare physicians to become experts with knowledge and experience in space medicine, space biomedical research, aerospace medicine, and manned space flight
  • Aviation Medicine Training
  • Facilitate the development of a new generation of space medical researchers who have a comprehensive background in clinical aerospace medicine and the operational environment of space
  • Support the development (concept, funding, and implementation) of research in space medicine
  • Support the U.S. Space Program by developing operational and research expertise that will facilitate human health and performance for advanced space missions
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