The NBL

“Learning is a weightless treasure you can always carry easily.”
— Chinese proverb

 

 

 

 

 

For this entry, I’m taking a break from recent leadership development topics to give a peek inside my world at NASA.

Yes, that’s me on the left.  I’m with one of my teammates who is suited up for a run at the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.  The NBL uses neutral buoyancy to simulate many of the effects of working in microgravity, and thus is critical for training astronauts for extravehicular activity (EVA, also known as a “spacewalk”).

The NBL is one of the facilities used by mission operations in Houston (another is Mission Control – you know, “Houston, we have a problem”) to support human spaceflight operations for NASA.  The NBL is one of several facilities in mission operations that is a part of the overall strategic planning work I am leading.

On the day this photo was taken, one of my teammates suited up for the run as part of a training exercise for the assisting divers who accompany the astronaut underwater.  The divers were practicing emergency exercises as part of their training and certification program.  It’s a rare treat for someone other than an astronaut to suit up, and it was an even nicer treat to see it happen in person.

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The NBL