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Dragon Leaves Station, Returns to Earth with Valuable Science

7 Apr 2020, 19:08 UTC
Dragon Leaves Station, Returns to Earth with Valuable Science
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Astronaut Andrew Morgan monitored the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship’s release from the Canadarm2 robotic arm on Tuesday morning. Credit: @AstroDrewMorgan
SpaceX’s Dragon cargo spacecraft splashed down in the Pacific Ocean at 2:50 p.m. (11:50 a.m. PDT), approximately 300 miles southwest of Long Beach, California, marking the end of the company’s 20th contracted cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station for NASA. The spacecraft returned more than 4,000 pounds of valuable scientific experiments and other cargo.
Some of the scientific investigations Dragon will return to Earth include:
Generating a nutritional meal
Planning ways to supply food for a multi-year mission on the Moon or Mars may require making food and nutrients in space. BioNutrients demonstrates a technology that enables on-demand production of nutrients needed during long-duration space missions. Although designed for space, this system also could help provide nutrition for people in remote areas of our planet.
Toward printing human organs in space
Biological printing of the tiny, complex structures found inside human organs, such as capillaries, is difficult in Earth’s gravity. The BioFabrication Facility (BFF) attempts to take the first steps toward the printing of human organs and tissues in microgravity. The facility may also help maintain the health ...

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