ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst during CAVES 2019.
CAVES stands for Cooperative Adventure for Valuing and Exercising human behaviour and performance Skills. The three-week course prepares astronauts to work safely and effectively in multicultural teams in an environment where safety is critical – in caves.
CAVES teaches astronauts to explore as a team. They journey deep underground to perform scientific experiments, map the environment, and document their activities.
Together, participants must adapt to living and working in the unique cave environment to meet scientific and exploration objectives. Constant attention to safety rules, procedures and equipment is critical to the successful completion of the mission.