TitleModification of Pointing Performance in Altered Gravitational Environments
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsCiofani, G, Migliore, A, Mazzei, D, Carrozza, M, Dario, P
JournalMicrogravity Science and Technology

The Fitts’ law describes a correlation between the time needed to complete basic tasks such as pointing movements and the level of knowledge of the specific target to be reached. While it has been largely proved in normal gravity, very few experiments have been carried out in altered gravitational conditions. In our experiment, four subjects were positioned in front of a panel where round targets were placed along a circumference. They carried out pointing movements towards the targets when these were switched on. The task time was acquired and processed off-line. In all the cases, the performance of each subject have been significantly modified in the altered gravitational environment and, in particular, hypergravity seems to affect motor performance more considerably than microgravity. Even if experiments involving several subjects and more complex tasks have to be carried out in order to confirm our findings, these results show that ergonomics could be strongly affected by the modification of gravity, especially during the first phase of exposure to gravity alteration.