Space Exploration

This page features disability news on Space Exploration from the Debrief Library. See also news on other subjects.


Alt text proved unexpected star of NASA’s Webb images:

“The image is divided horizontally by an undulating line between a cloudscape forming a nebula along the bottom portion and a comparatively clear upper portion,” reads one. “Speckled across both portions is a starfield, showing innumerable stars of many sizes. The smallest of these are small, distant, and faint points of light. The largest of these appear larger, closer, brighter, and more fully resolved with 8-point diffraction spikes. The upper portion of the image is bluish, and has wispy translucent cloudlike streaks rising from the nebula below.” (Jul, Washington Post)

How AstroAccess Plans to Extend Accessibility in Space. Good to see in this piece that NASA experiments in the area of disability and space exploration date back to the 1960s with a study on motion sickness as experienced by deaf men. (Jun, Payload)

The Right Stuff a great episode exploring the ways we imagine space, space travel, and what that means for life back on Earth. (Mar, Radiolab)


British Paralympian John McFall becomes European Space Agency's first disabled astronaut. (Nov, Sky) See also what the parastronaut program means for disability in space. (Inverse)

United States

Disabled in Space with Denna Lambert. “Denna’s experience as part of the second disabled cohort to experience zero gravity and its implications for access here on Earth, and how being a single mom to a four-year-old is sometimes like being in space.” (Mar, Down to the Struts)

‘You Are Not Leaving Without Us’: “AstroAccess is on a mission to make it possible for disabled people to live and work in space. By doing so, it’s making space safer and better for everyone.” (Mar, GizModo)

AstroAccess Successfully Completes First Weightless Research Flight with International Disabled Crew. (Dec, AstroAccess)

Making space accessible for all discussion with the team from Mission:AstroAccess on research and esting in microgravity. (Jan, WMFE)

This space company wants to help people with disabilities become astronauts “So often we make design decisions up front that are exclusionary to entire segments of the population. That’s why I’m so excited about space. Space, to me, is a blank canvas.” and “NASA proved that deaf space flight participants would be more adaptable to the foreign gravitational environments, and yet there has never been a deaf astronaut.” (Dec, The Hill)