When astronauts embark on long-duration missions in the future, crews will grow food to supplement what they can bring with them. More than 20 years of continuously living and working in space aboard the International Space Station has provided many opportunities for crews and researchers to observe the challenges of growing plants in the stressful conditions of microgravity.
One experiment on NASA SpaceX’s 23rd Commercial Resupply Services mission to the space station will help determine the effect of plant stress responses to the microgravity environment. The Advanced Plant Experiment-08 (APEX-08) will grow Arabidopsis thaliana, a plant scientists routinely use for research. The study includes making genetic alterations that elicit a response in the pool of polyamines, a group of organic compounds that modulate plant responses to environmental stress.
NASA is inviting the public to take part in virtual activities and events ahead of the launch of SpaceX’s 23rd commercial resupply service mission to send research and supplies to the International Space Station aboard a Dragon spacecraft. Launch is targeted for 3:37 a.m. EDT on Saturday, Aug. 28, 2021, from Launch Complex 39A at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.
Members of the public can register to attend the launch virtually. NASA’s virtual guest program for this launch includes curated launch resources, notifications about interaction opportunities, and a virtual guest passport stamp following a successful launch.
The spacecraft will deliver a variety of NASA science investigations to the station, including a study on preventing and treating bone density loss, an investigation that could detect and mitigate vision disorders, and a new robotic arm demonstration that could reveal potential uses on Earth, including in disaster relief.
Members of the public can also share in the journey through a variety of activities, including:
Virtual Launch Passport
Print, fold, and get ready to fill your virtual passport. Stamps will be emailed following launches to those who register via email through Eventbrite.
Watch and Engage on Social Media
Stay connected with the mission on social media and let people know you’re following it on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Follow and tag these accounts:
NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX is targeting Saturday, Aug. 28, to launch its 23rd commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station. SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company’s Dragon spacecraft is scheduled for liftoff at 3:37 a.m. EDT from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
The spacecraft will deliver a variety of NASA science investigations, including a study on preventing and treating bone density loss, an investigation that will test diagnostic devices that could detect and mitigate vision disorders, and a new robotic arm for demonstration that could reveal potential uses on Earth, including in disaster relief.
The capsule also will deliver materials including concrete, fiberglass composites, and substances that can offer protection against radiation to investigate how they respond to the harsh environment of space. Additionally, nanofluidic and educational experiments will use the new research facility aboard the orbiting laboratory.
Register as a virtual guest for this mission to access curated launch resources, receive up-to-date information and opportunities, and get your virtual guest passport stamp following a successful launch.