15th NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO) mission (first ever NEEMO mission was in 2001);
Splashdown: October 20, 2011;
Return: October 26, 2011.
David Saint-Jacques, Canadian Space Agency (CSA) Astronaut;
Shannon Walker, NEEMO 15 Commander, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) astronaut;
Takuya Onishi, Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut;
Steven Squyres, Professor at Cornell University;
James Talacek, Aquanaut, University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW);
Nate Bender, Aquanaut, UNCW.
The Habitat Aquarius
Located: about 19 metres below the surface, 5.6 km off Key Largo in the Florida Keys;
Aquarius itself, a 3-by-14-metre steel cylinder, provides 11 cubic metres of living and laboratory space for a six-person crew. The lab is equipped with computers linked to shore, as well as Internet, telephones, radios, and video-conferencing equipment;
This extreme hostile environment is analogous to human space flight and has been used in the training of Space Station astronauts and as a platform for research and technology development since 2001.