NASA, European Space Agency (ESA), and German Aerospace Center (DLR) are requesting 24 volunteers to lie in bed for two months as part of a study into examining how the body changes in weightlessness. The three space agencies will compensate each volunteer $19,000.
"We are looking for test persons who take part in a bed rest study from September to December 2019 in Cologne and spend 60 days lying down. Based on the study results, scientists are developing countermeasures that reduce the negative effects of weightlessness on astronauts," reads a translated DLR website for the project.
Dubbed Agbresa (Artificial Gravity Bed Rest Study), NASA, ESA, and DLR have asked the public for 12 men and 12 women who will spend 60 days in special beds angled downward by 6 degrees, feet elevated above heads, with one shoulder touching the mattress at all times. This position simulates astronauts in space.
According to ESA, one group of volunteers will be spun around in a short-arm human centrifuge to generate artificial gravity and force blood back in the extremities, while the other group won't.
Agbresa is the first of its kind to be conducted in partnership between the multiple space agencies. The test will be conducted at DLR's medical research facility called the envihab facility.
ESA explained that bedrest had been the best way for researchers to mimic some of the body's changes that would occur in space. Humans have been created to live on Earth, and without the constant pull of gravity, the body's muscles and bones deteriorate.
Astronauts on board the International Space Station exercise for several hours per day and maintain a healthy diet to mitigate microgravity’s effects on the body, but researchers who are conducting the study believe a dose of artificial gravity on deep space missions could be beneficial for astronauts.
So, if you're a broke millennial and need a quick payout to cover half of your student loans, well, NASA's bed rest study could be for you.
Applications for the study are available online.