Dr Grant Schaffner
Dr. Schaffner is an Assistant Professor in the School of Aerospace Systems within the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati. He currently works on engineering challenges related to human health and performance in extreme environments such as spaceflight and military operations. His ongoing projects include research into semi-autonomous robotic surgery methods, exoskeleton systems for movement assistance and space suit simulation, optimizing exercise in weightlessness, and improving protection of occupants in armored vehicles during blast events.
Dr. Schaffner attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Aeronautics and Astronautics in 1989 and 1994, respectively. In 2000 he received his PhD in Medical Engineering from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology. His doctoral dissertation applied the use of multibody dynamics and finite element methods to assess the risk of hip fracture in astronauts following long term space flight. After receiving his doctorate, Dr. Schaffner worked for ATA Engineering in San Diego, California, performing structural analyses of aerospace systems. Following this, he worked for Wyle Integrated Science and Engineering in Houston, Texas, for seven years as a contractor at the NASA Johnson Space Center. During this time, he served as the supervisor for the NASA JSC Exercise Physiology Laboratory and later as the Project Lead Engineer for the Exercise Countermeasures Project. While at NASA he helped to develop exercise equipment for the International Space Station, including the Advanced Resistive Exercise Device, initiated the development of a space suit simulator, and performed critical mission tasks assessments. During 2008 to 2009, Dr. Schaffner served as the Staff Scientist at BAE Systems in Fairfield, Ohio, where he led the effort to simulate human dynamics and injury during blast events involving armored vehicles.