Thought aid from space used on Earth

A psychological tool that was originally designed for astronauts - and has been used in projects such as Mars 500, a simulated manned flight to Mars - is being employed in the UK for applications in businesses, the community and educational settings. Distributed by Chartered Psychologist and member of the British Psychological Society Pauline Willis, Real Time Sociomapping helps to facilitate live, visual presentations about teams.

The method makes use of hand-held electronic data input devices that enable participants to offer their thoughts at a touch of a button.

Instant, wireless transfers mean feedback can be instantly accessed in the form of a Sociomap.

Ms Willis said the approach is robust and practical and makes understanding complex human relationships accessible to many people.

"Instant access to this kind of analysis supports effective team working and decision making processes and complements the other tools we introduced to the UK in 2008," she added.