Spaceport Sweden and UK-based technology consultants Qinetiq are to work together to develop a preparation programme for commercial space travellers, initially based at the Flight Physiological Centre in Linköping, Sweden.
The Linköping centre has what it bills as among the world's most advanced dynamic flight simulators, combining a man-rated, long-arm centrifuge and flight simulator. The simulator provides a safe and highly controllable environment in which commercial human spaceflight passengers can experience the sustained periods of increased acceleration present during launch and re-entry and allows for the precise re-creation of the complex and unique g profiles generated by future commercial space vehicles.
Spaceport chief executive Karin Nilsdotter says the objective is to devise a programme from which "future space travellers will emerge prepared, confident and relaxed, ready to maximise their journey to space".
Spaceport Sweden, in Kiruna, Swedish Lapland, hopes to become Europe's gateway to CHSF, promising launch infrastructure and R&D facilities for commercial operators.
The Swedish Institute of Space Physics has conducted research in Kiruna since 1957, and the Esrange Space Center, a rocket range and research facility built by the European Space Agency and managed by the SSC Group, has been active in the area since 1966.
Kiruna, north of the Arctic Circle, is a mining town in a region described as Europe's last wilderness. The town is also known for its Ice Hotel.