NTE-SENER used SolidWorks design software to develop the Muscle Atrophy Research and Exercise System (MARES), which astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) use to offset the debilitating effects of zero gravity on muscle mass.

The Challenge

As the main contractor for the Muscle Atrophy Research and Exercise System (MARES), NTE-SENER developed a sophisticated system to help astronauts exercise while onboard the International Space Station and to enable researchers to study the negative impacts of zero gravity on human muscles, and the effectiveness of the counter measures on board. Working on behalf of the European Space Agency (ESA), and in tandem with the NASA Human Research Facility (HRF), NTE-SENER faced significant engineering and communications challenges on the development of the MARES system, which required 3D tools.

The Solution

NTE-SENER chose the SolidWorks® 3D design platform to develop the MARES system because it’s easy to use, could import 3D models of existing space station designs, and included 3D design and visualization tools. By using SolidWorks on the project, NTE-SENER shortened its development cycle by 25 to 30 percent, automated design through the use of configurations, reduced the number of design errors, and supported a modular approach to design for ease of assembly.

Success Metric

  • Shortened development cycle by 25 to 30 percent.

  • Automated design through use with configurations

  • Reduced number of design errors

  • Supported modular design for ease of assembly