Dundee University students get taste of space medicine

Two Dundee University students are considering careers in space medicine after completing internships with the European Space Agency (ESA).

Amir Fathi and Neil Tan had meetings with experts including British astronaut Tim Peake during their eight weeks with the ESA.

The fifth-year medical students carried out their internships at the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany.

Mr Fathi said it was a "real privilege" to spend time with the astronaut.

He said the experience had inspired him to pursue the field after graduation.

Mr Fathi, from London, said: "Generally, final-year students spend their electives in fields of medicine that are of interest to them, so I wanted to use my eight weeks to explore aviation and space medicine further.

"We spent most of our time at the ESA working on space exploration projects.

"For example, I was assigned to projects looking at the effects of visual function in space and its effect on balance, as well as looking into changes in fluid shifts in microgravity and how this impacts brain blood flow in astronauts."

Mr Tan said the internship had given him a "great insight" into both space medicine and occupational health medicine.

He said: "We received an incredible insight into what it means to be a flight surgeon - doctors who are exclusively trained to work with astronauts - as well as the pressures they face in space."

Photo credit: ESA