An Overview of Augmented Reality Solutions for the Enhancement of Space Exploration and Operations



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51st International Conference on Environmental Systems


Augmented reality (AR) offers the potential to be a versatile instrument in the completion of complex tasks during space exploration missions. Among countless other applications, AR technology can be utilized to guide astronauts through routine yet vital tasks by providing procedural instructions in real time, assist exploration through GPS functionality, and improve astronaut safety on extravehicular activities (EVA) by means of interaction with the interface and communication between devices.

This paper discusses the distinct capabilities of AR technology as they relate to the facilitation of scientific operations in space, focusing on identifying the requisite characteristics of an AR system in this setting. These characteristics can enhance the informational richness of the astronaut�s immediate environment while simultaneously minimizing distraction, hands-on use of the AR system, and attention disruption.

Noted are the shortcomings of such devices in their current standing, as well as potential solutions such as that may be implemented in future iterations to mitigate the problems caused by the current generation�s limitations. The workload demanded from the AR Head-Mounted-Display�s (HMD) processor can produce a high amount of heat and eyestrain can occur due to the nature of the HMD�s lack to mimic a human�s ability to focus on an object. Some of the solutions discussed in this paper note on coding techniques that may be implemented to reduce the workload on the HMD�s processor, as well as implementing retinal blur to help reduce eye strain. These solutions will improve the functionality of an AR system and help create a device suitable for active fieldwork in a location as uniquely demanding as space.


Kaitlyn Baker, University of Baltimore, US
ICES401: Extravehicular Activity: Systems
The 51st International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Saint Paul, Minnesota, US, on 10 July 2022 through 14 July 2022.


Extravehicular activity, EVA, Augmented Reality, AR, Head Mounted Display, HMD, Space exploration