The Brazilian Space Agency’s (AEB) manager of the Centennial Mission, Raimundo Nonato Mussi, reported that all of Brazil’s experiments were approved in the next-to-last phase of the selection process for the space voyage organized by the Russian Federation’s Space Agency (Roskosmos).
Lieutenant Coronel Marcos Pontes, the first Brazilian astronaut, will accompany the experiments on board the Soyuz spacecraft. He and two other astronauts – a Russian and an American – are scheduled to take off for the International Space Station (ISS) on March 30.
According to Mussi, the eight experiments will now go to Russia for the final stage of evaluation. He called special attention to the research project designed by 7th and 8th grade public school students from the state of São Paulo.
"We are very happy to be taking the experiments prepared by the São José dos Campos public school students." Mussi explained that their experiments involve a comparison of how seeds grow in the soil in an atmosphere of microgravity.
The other experiments propose to analyze the effects of gravity on enzyme kinetics, protein interaction, DNA damage and recovery, seed germination, internal temperature control using minitubes, bean seed growth, and chlorophyll chromatography. The purpose of all the experiments is to contribute to research in the areas of health, food science, and technology.
Mussi went on to say that the progress of the experiments will be recorded. Once the mission is over, the tests will be returned to the researchers. The Centennial Mission will last ten days. According to the AEB, the astronauts will spend eight days aboard the ISS, where the experiments will be performed.
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