Astrobotany and the Future of Science Education

The world is changing fast and scientific research is accelerating at lightning pace. The dawn of cloud computing, massive data networks and bioinformatics is bringing together scientists from all around the world to participate in a new era of technology. Entire genomes are free and available at the click of a button. New engineering developments, …

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Astrobotany Clothing: For the Love of Science, For the Love of Streetwear

If you get a chance, check out the clothing tab of our website.  In that section of astrobotany.com you’ll find some design work that I’ve done and you’ll also find the clothing line I’ve been working on. You may be asking why there is a clothing section on a site that also hosts a database …

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Dissertation on Arabidopsis and Microgravity is Comprehensive, Powerful

Christina Johnson, a PhD candidate at the Miami University Graduate School has completed her dissertation on Arabidopsis Thaliana grown in microgravity. Dr. Johnson analyzed data from STS-131 (BRIC-16).  STS-131 was a shuttle launch in April of 2010.  STS-131 has yielded valuable data for astrobotany researchers.  Other papers include Kwon et al., 2015, which examined transcriptional response to spaceflight …

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Spaceflight Experiment Opportunity: ASGSR’s Ken Souza Award

If you have an idea for an experiment that requires microgravity, consider applying for the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research (ASGSR)’s Ken Souza Award. If your proposal is selected you will receive a $1,000 grant and a free payload sample on Blue Origins New Shepard rocket in 2018. If you are interested please apply …

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Problems pop up fast, but science responds faster (check out the new clinostat)

It’s natural for people to worry about the future. Our generation worries about things that are especially pressing: climate change, overpopulation, destruction of habitats, etc. These issues are concerning, but I am continually amazed at how fast we respond to these problems. Science moves quickly; so quickly we often take it for granted. A hundred …

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Astrobotany Outreach at UW Science Expeditions

Today, I headed over with members of the Gilroy Lab to the UW Health Sciences Learning Center to participate in Science Expeditions 2017. Science Expeditions is a public event where different researchers around the University present their work. Our focus for the day was plant cell biology and microscopy, but we talked about astrobotany research …

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Shenzhou 8 Study Highlights Changes in Plant Metabolism in Response to Spaceflight Stress

A new paper has been released by scientists in China studying changes in gene expression in the model organism Arabidopsis Thaliana. This experiment used special biological hardware called SIMBOX (Science in Microgravity BOX) to fly plants aboard the Shenzhou 8 Spacecraft (November  of 2011).  It is understood that a spaceflight environment alters gene expression compared …

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NASA Discovers Potentially Habitable Planets Surrounding Nearby Star

On 2/22/17 NASA announced news that their Spitzer telescope had discovered a seven planet system around TRAPPIST-1, a nearby star. TRAPPIST-1 is around 40 lightyears away, in the Aquarius constellation. Three of these planets are in the CHZ (Circumstellar Habitable Zone) which holds the promise of liquid water and consequently the ability to support life. …

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