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How Does Your Space Garden Grow?

 

Written by Linda Herridge and Amanda Griffin
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationFlorida – Early Friday morning, astronauts onboard the International Space Station were busy at work, harvesting three varieties of leafy greens from the Veggie growth chamber and installing the next generation of plant research – the high-tech Advanced Plant Habitat.

The Veggie plant growth team kicked it up a notch with their sixth round of crops grown aboard the International Space Station with experiment VEG-03D. For the first time, three different plant varieties are simultaneously growing in the Veggie chamber.

Three different varieties of plants growing in the Veggie plant growth chamber on the International Space Station were harvested this morning. (NASA/ISS)

Three different varieties of plants growing in the Veggie plant growth chamber on the International Space Station were harvested this morning. (NASA/ISS)

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NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft ready for Asteroid mission to Bennu

 

Written by Linda Herridge
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationFlorida – The first U.S. mission to travel to an asteroid, retrieve samples and return them to Earth is targeted for a September 8th launch atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

This groundbreaking mission, several years in the making, is the Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security-Regolith Explorer, also known as OSIRIS-REx. It will travel to near-Earth asteroid Bennu, map its surface using 3-D laser imaging, retrieve samples from the surface and return to Earth.

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, enclosed in a payload fairing, is lifted Aug. 29 at Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket that is to lift OSIRIS-REx into space was stacked at SLC-41 so the spacecraft and fairing could be hoisted up and bolted to the rocket. (NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis)

The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, enclosed in a payload fairing, is lifted Aug. 29 at Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket that is to lift OSIRIS-REx into space was stacked at SLC-41 so the spacecraft and fairing could be hoisted up and bolted to the rocket. (NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis)

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NASA reports International Space Station to harvest Zinnia Planets on Valentine’s Day

 

Written by Linda Herridge
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationKennedy Space Center, FL – Zinnia plants from the Veggie ground control experiment at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida were harvested February 11th in the same way that crew member Scott Kelly will harvest the zinnias growing in the Veggie system aboard the International Space Station on February 14th—Valentine’s Day.

Flowering plants will help scientists learn more about growing crops for deep-space missions and NASA’s journey to Mars.

The ground plants didn’t experience some of the same stressors as those grown simultaneously on the ISS — like unexpected fungus growth.

Zinnia plants from the Veggie ground control system are being harvested in the Flight Equipment Development Laboratory in the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. From left, are John Carver, an integration engineer with Jacobs on the Test and Operations Support Contract, and Chuck Spern, a project engineer with Vencore on the Engineering Services Contract.(NASA/Bill White)

Zinnia plants from the Veggie ground control system are being harvested in the Flight Equipment Development Laboratory in the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. From left, are John Carver, an integration engineer with Jacobs on the Test and Operations Support Contract, and Chuck Spern, a project engineer with Vencore on the Engineering Services Contract.(NASA/Bill White)

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NASA prepares Orion Crew Module for Uncrewed Flight Test

 

Written by Linda Herridge
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationKennedy Space Center, FL – The Orion crew module pressure vessel has arrived at Kennedy Space Center in Florida and is now secured in an upgraded version of a test stand called the “birdcage” inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout (O&C) Building high bay. Orion will eventually take NASA on a journey to Mars, but first, the spacecraft is being prepared for a mission past the moon during Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1).

The pressure vessel is the crew module’s underlying structure. Processing at Kennedy began February 3rd to prepare it for launch atop the agency’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket from Kennedy’s Launch Pad 39B in 2018.

Inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building high bay at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, members of the news media get an up-close look at the Orion crew module pressure vessel on Feb. 3. Testing and assembly has begun, which will lead to Exploration Mission-1 in 2018. EM-1 will be an uncrewed flight test in which the spacecraft will launch atop NASA’s Space Launch System rocket. (NASA/Bill White)

Inside the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building high bay at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, members of the news media get an up-close look at the Orion crew module pressure vessel on Feb. 3. Testing and assembly has begun, which will lead to Exploration Mission-1 in 2018. EM-1 will be an uncrewed flight test in which the spacecraft will launch atop NASA’s Space Launch System rocket. (NASA/Bill White)

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NASA’s Ground Systems Development and Operations completes Plans Design Review for the Journey to Mars

 

Written by Linda Herridge
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationKennedy Space Center, FL – NASA’s Ground Systems Development and Operations Program (GSDO) has successfully completed its critical design review, on the path to preparing for the agency’s journey to Mars.

Members of the review board completed their in-depth assessment of the plans for the facilities and ground support systems at Kennedy Space Center in Florida that will be needed to process NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft for deep-space exploration missions.

An artist illustration of NASA's Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft on the mobile launcher at Launch Pad 39B at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (NASA)

An artist illustration of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft on the mobile launcher at Launch Pad 39B at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (NASA)

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NASA astronauts to eat Fresh Food grown on International Space Station

 

Written by Linda Herridge
NASA Kennedy Space Center

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationKennedy Space Center, FL – Fresh food grown in the microgravity environment of space officially is on the menu for the first time for NASA astronauts on the International Space Station. Expedition 44 crew members, including NASA’s one-year astronaut Scott Kelly, are ready to sample the fruits of their labor after harvesting a crop of “Outredgeous” red romaine lettuce Monday, August 10th, from the Veggie plant growth system on the nation’s orbiting laboratory.

The astronauts will clean the leafy greens with citric acid-based, food safe sanitizing wipes before consuming them. They will eat half of the space bounty, setting aside the other half to be packaged and frozen on the station until it can be returned to Earth for scientific analysis.

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