The Science Brief
One of the greatest attractions of space for scientists is that it is a completely
different environment in which to work: microgravity has massive potential for
researching new and innovative processes, and research in space allows one far
greater latitude for avoiding earth-bound contraints.
The serendipitous truth is that it is precisely these unusual conditions
pose so many problems for anyone doing science in space. In order to accomodate both the
need for real science and the rigours of spaceflight, the team put together a resource
detailing equipment and other considerations.
|The invitation originally sent out by the team includes information on what restrictions
would be placed on the cost of the projects and the ownership of the rights to any results
|Working in space has serious restrictions on what kinds of equipment and experiments are possible. Not only considering the
massive cost of launching each kilogram of equipment, the rigours those undergo are extreme.
|The International Space Station was designed specifically to perform a number of vital scientific functions. First amongst
these is the very science of building and manning an orbital station, but other science is practised. This means that a fair amount
of equipment is already availalbe for use in experiments.
|One of the most fascinating aspects of science in space is that organisms must function in an environment where a number
of basic "design assumptions" fall flat - with no gravity to affect their development, how do seeds develop? How does the pumping
of the human heart interact with this environment? Biotechnology provides a plethora of avenues
for fruitful research.