Particle physics experiments

Space station astronauts unpack new science experiments from SpaceX Dragon supply ship

The SpaceX Dragon supply ship carrying more than 5,800 pounds of new science experiments and crew supplies, photographed from a window of the SpaceX Dragon Freedom crew ship, approaches the International Space Station above the South Atlantic Ocean on July 16, 2022. Credit: NASA

New science experiments continue to be unpacked inside the newly arrived SpaceX Dragon supply ship. The seven crew members of Expedition 67 also ensured that the International Space Station (ISS) continued to orbit Earth in pristine condition.

The Dragon spacecraft, which was launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Pad 39A, 8:44 p.m. EDT (5:44 p.m. PDT) July 14 from " data-gt-translate-attributes="[{" attribute="">Nasa‘s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, autonomously docked to the forward-facing port of the station’s Harmony module at 11:21 a.m. EDT (8:21 a.m. PDT) July 16, as the ISS traveled more than 267 miles over the South Atlantic Ocean.

NASA astronauts Jessica Watkins and Bob Hines spent Monday, July 18 unloading some of the more than 5,800 pounds of crew supplies and science experiments delivered Saturday inside the freighter Dragon. The flight engineering duo transferred time-critical research samples to the orbiting laboratory to begin exploring a variety of space phenomena for the benefit of humans on and off Earth. Some of the new experiments include a study of the human immune system, an investigation of protein production, and a cancer treatment experiment.

NASA flight engineer Kjell Lindgren helped Watkins and Hines move science freezers inside Dragon to access cargo pallets. Lindgren has also taken care of the cultivation of radishes and mizuna leaves using hydroponic and aeroponic methods for the XROOTS Space Botany Study. ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti tested the computer connections inside the European Physiology Module which supports neuroscientific, cardiovascular and physiological investigations inside the Columbus laboratory module.

The station’s three cosmonauts focused primarily on life support maintenance tasks. Commander Oleg Artemyev and Flight Engineer Denis Matveev serviced Russian ventilation systems by replacing vents and filters. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov performed orbital plumbing duties inside Nauka’s general-purpose laboratory module.