Our journeys off-world have taught us just as much about humanity as the harsh environment of space. For the past 20 years, we have had a continuous presence aboard the International Space Station, which has expanded our technical, biological, and operational knowledge of living and working in microgravity. We have also developed a wealth of more personal insights about space from the lived experiences of the astronauts and cosmonauts who have called the ISS home.
The Astronaut Ethnography Project captures and distills experiences from spacefaring humans in order to inspire future engineering, policy, and design. Through interviews with astronauts, cosmonauts, and spaceflight participants—as well as analysis of primary source accounts, video, and photographic documentation of space environments—this research endeavor aims to present embodied, human-centered insights about how humans work, play, and reflect on Earth from space. As the nature of life in space changes to include more diverse crews and missions, we can learn much from how today’s spacefarers adapt to the challenges of microgravity when imaging the future.