You will never have heard of someone who is being paid for sleeping on his bed. Well, not any more, as NASA is paying this guy some serious cash for lying in bed.
The CFT 70 (Countermeasure and Functional Testing in Head-Down Tilt Bed Rest Study) is an integral part of an effort by NASA to understand bone and muscle atrophy in space. The study is 3 years long and so far, NASA has studied 54 people and the last participant is Andrew Iwanicki who, after losing his job in August, received an offer by NASA to join the study where he was required to stay in bed for 3 months and get paid, $18,000, for it.
Andrew says; ‘My bed is in the NASA Flight Analog Research Unit in Houston, Texas, where I’m being paid $18,000 to lie down for 70 days while NASA researchers study me. I have been in this bed for three weeks now, and I will be here for seven weeks more.’
Andrew was chosen from a pool of 25,000 applicants and says that he applied for this on whim. The stay in bed isn’t as easy as it sounds; Andrew had to deal with ‘pre-bed rest’ period for 3 weeks first during which his routine changed to match the new role and he underwent a number of tests. How he felt when he took the offer is best described in his own words; ‘I decided that I needed a break. So I put my life on hold and flew to Houston two weeks later. As I lie here, I can’t quite decide if I’ve struck gold with this scheme or if I am just a fool willing to do anything for a stack of cash.’
Upon the start of the test, Andrew experienced body pain followed by headaches, however, after a week he started adapting to the new lifestyle and says that the pain subsided while started enjoying reading and watching TV shows.
Andrew isn’t spending this time without doing something constructive; he is working for GRE and LSAT studies and says that he feels ‘cautiously optimistic’. Check out the video below for more details: