In its current space mission on board the international space station (ISS), NASA is using air-sampling equipment from the Goettingen-based technology group Sartorius. The battery-operable AirPort MD8, which was brought to the ISS on a previous mission, is now being utilized in space for microbiological testing.
NASA is using air-sampling equipment on board the ISS (shown here). Photo courtesy of NASA.
The air sampler is being used to gather information for protection of the ISS crew. The purpose of the test program is to collect and analyze microbes and allergens with which the space station crew might come in contact. Preflight, in-flight and post-flight samples are taken to determine the base contamination and to evaluate new sources of contamination. Crew members are also collecting data.
The AirPort MD8 is also being used to help prepare molecular primers, or nucleotide sequences, to further develop general microbial methods of detection at NASA and other laboratories.
The battery-operable AirPort MD8 is being utilized in space for microbiological testing. Photo courtesy of Sartorius.