NASA has funded the launch of an Orbital Medicine-built space medical technology aboard Blue Origin‘s New Shepard reusable space vehicle on Tuesday.
The Evolved Medical Microgravity Suction Device is designed to help treat chest trauma in a space environment, NASA said Thursday.
Treatment of astronauts’ traumatic injuries currently needs to be performed on Earth using gravity-dependent tools that will not work in space, NASA noted.
Orbital Medicine’s device includes a suction system that works to collect blood in microgravity and help lungs continuously inflate.
The medical technology is also built to store blood for transfusion as well as show how the device removes air and blood to support healing through a pneumothorax simulator.
Orbital Medicine built the payload in partnership with the Purdue University of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
NASA selected the device through a funding opportunity announcement in November 2015.