Our research is based on the observation that a human’s physiological adaptation to microgravity can affect the function of their involuntary, sympathetic systems. These conditions may have a role in the regulation of ones’ circulatory functions and related physiological adjustments, and suggest that the onset of certain cardiovascular diseases may be attributed to prolonged exposure to this environment.

 

For this reason, we have designed and are building an ultrasound compatible, soft-robotic heart simulator which consists of interchangeable pathological components, such as a faulty mitral valve and abdominal aneurysms. The design also consists of introducing heart arrhythmia via a microcontroller controlled actuator.