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Professor Steven Moore

BE (Hons) MEngSci (UNSW) PhD (University of Sydney)
Deputy Dean - Research/Professor
School of Engineering and Technology
Centre for Intelligent Systems
(07) 4930 9026
Rockhampton North
Building 30 - 2-15
About Me

My career journey has been one of unexpected twists and turns. In 1988 my work in the nascent field of machine vision in automotive production monitoring led me to undertake a PhD on image processing techniques for accurate assessment of 3D eye movements whilst working as a biomedical engineer at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney. The eye tracking algorithms were used clinically at RPAH and were also of interest to NASA, as small rotational movements of the eye during head tilt reflected output from the otoliths, the gravity-sensing 'accelerometers' of the inner ear. At the completion of my PhD in 1996 I was offered a position as a post-doctoral research associate at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City under Professor Bernard Cohen. Dr Cohen had received a grant from NASA to fly a human centrifuge, capable of generating 1-g of centripetal acceleration, aboard the shuttle Columbia during the 1998 Neurolab mission (STS-90). This was the first (and so far only) application of 'artificial gravity' in human spaceflight. I had the unique opportunity of managing this large international project as a co-investigator. I was also hired as a consultant by the European Space Agency (ESA) Directorate of Manned Spaceflight to oversee the development of the Neurolab video-oculography software, a critical experimental component used to assess otolith function during centrifugation in space and on the ground.

Contrary to expectations, otolith-ocular reflexes were preserved during and after the Neurolab flight. Moreover, orthostatic intolerance, the inability to maintain blood flow to the brain when standing that affects approximately two-thirds of astronauts after landing, was not observed in our four centrifuged astronauts; an unlikely chance occurrence (0.364 or approximately 1 in 60). As otolith input sensing the transition from sit-to-stand likely initiates the sympathetic response to maintain cerebral blood flow, I submitted a proposal to NASA hypothesizing that regular exposure to artificial gravity (centrifugation) aboard the Neurolab mission helped maintain otolith-ocular and otolith-sympathetic reflexes that are usually impaired following extended periods of microgravity. This, my first project as principal investigator, was awarded in 2000.

In the subsequent 15 years I have been principal investigator on several NASA grants totaling over US$6.3 million. My last flight project, awarded in 2009, has assessed the ability of astronauts to operate complex machinery (simulated aircraft landings and driving a car) on the day of landing after 6-months aboard the International Space Station. Astronaut testing was completed in June 2015, and the study results were presented to NASA's mission architecture team to help plan early crew activities after lengthy transits in microgravity for future exploration-class missions. In 2005 I applied the measurement technologies developed in support of astronaut assessment to the evaluation of pathological gait in Parkinson's disease, and I have since received funding for this work from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Michael J. Fox Foundation. In 2016, after 20 years at Mount Sinai, I returned to Australia to start a new career as Deputy Dean for Research at CQUniversity.

Universities Studied At

University of NSW

Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) 1982-1988

Master of Engineering Science 1988-1990

University of Sydney

Doctor of Philosophy 1993-1996

Universities Worked At

University of NSW


Research Associate, School of Electrical Engineering and Telecommunications

University of Sydney


Lecturer, RPAH Neuro-otology Department

Mount Sinai School of Medicine (now the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai) New York City


Currently Adjunct Professor of Neurology



Professor, Deputy Dean for Research in the School of Engineering and Technology


Young Investigators Grant, Australian Brain Foundation, 1993

Dora Lush Biomedical Post-Graduate Scholarship, National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Australia, 1993-1995

NASA Certificate of Achievement ATLAS project on Neurolab STS-90, 1998

NASA Certificate of Recognition for a Space Act Award, November 8, 2005

Journal of Neuroscience Methods; Top-cited paper 2008-2010 'Ambulatory monitoring of freezing of gait in Parkinson's disease' 2010.

Media Citations

May 30th 2011 Smithsonian Air & Space Magazine article “Ground Effect” about my research into modeling spatial disorientation in shuttle commanders using electrical stimulation of the balance nerve.

August 24th 2010 Wired magazine article “Zapping nerves simulates space-flight effects”

November 22nd 2010 radio interview on the Space Show with Dr David Livingston.

Consultancy Work

European Space Agency

Directorate of Manned Spaceflight, Nordwijk, the Netherlands,1996-1998

Development of flight hardware for eye movement measurement aboard the Neurolab shuttle mission


Toulouse, France, 2004-2006

Investigation of head-eye coordination during simulated tail strike

Neurocom Inc

Pittsburgh PA, 2004-2005

Development of commercial video-oculography system

Vesticon Inc

Portland OR, 2006

Development of commercial video-oculography system

Recent Research Projects
No research projects to display.
Research Supervision

I am currently accredited for supervision in the following:

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Neurosciences

At the level of Mentor Supervisor

Current Capacity
I am currently unavailable to supervise more research candidates
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