Brain.Space, a four-year-old Israeli startup that studies data on brain activity, is expected to test a special electroencephalogram (EEG) helmet on three astronauts next week during SpaceX’s flight to the International Space Station (ISS, in English abbreviation). This mission was planned by the private spaceflight company Axiom Space.
The ten-day mission, the first private flight to the space station, will begin on Sunday (3) with four astronauts.
“In fact, we know that the microgravity environment affects the physiological parameters of the body. So it’s possible that it affects the brain and we want to monitor that,” Brainspace CEO Yair Levy told Reuters.
He said data was collected in space continuously on heart rate, skin resistance, muscle mass and more, but not yet on brain activity.
Brain.Space is joining 30 experiments that will be part of the so-called Rakia mission to the International Space Station.
Three of the four astronauts – including Israel’s Eitan Stipe – will wear the helmet, which contains 460 air brushes attached to the scalp, and will multitask for 20 minutes a day, the data of which will be uploaded to a laptop on the space station. The tasks include “optical aberration” which the company says has been effective in detecting abnormal brain dynamics.
Similar studies using these missions have been completed on Earth, and after the Brain.Space mission it will compare data from the International Space Station to see differences in brain activity between Earth and space.
She noted that such experiments are necessary because space exploration is long-term and “life outside the world is very close.”
Brain.Space, which also said it raised $8.5 million in an initial funding round, calls itself a brain infrastructure company and works with the Department of Cognitive and Brain Sciences at Israel’s Ben-Gurion University to turn terabytes of data into usable information.
Levy said he hopes the space mission will be a springboard for institutions, researchers and other software developers to use his brain data platform.
“Space is an accelerator. The idea is to revolutionize and enable brain activity apps, products, and services as easily as extracting data from the Apple Watch,” Levy said, citing ADHD as an example. .
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