On the 19th of December, we will finally be launching the winning Mission Discovery teams’ experiments to be carried out on the International Space Station! This is the first time EVER that British schoolchildren’s experiments have been carried out on the ISS. The age group of the participants was 13-18. In this blog, we’ll be outlining the first of the two experiments being launched, as well as giving you some insight into the team behind it!
Mission Discovery students hard at work on their experiment!
The first experiment aims to test whether or not antibiotics will be as effective in space! In the experiment, the antibiotic ‘Ampicillin’ will be tested for its ability to inhibit the growth of the harmful bacteria E. Coli, although the strain being used in the Mission Discovery experiment is harmless. Bacteria seem to thrive in zero gravity, whereas drugs to battle them have been proven to be less effective. E. Coli is one of the most likely bacteria to grow during space travel.
More harmful than it looks: the E. Coli virus
Scientists have previously tested the effect of other drugs in space and found that reactions are different to here on earth. It is believed that this experiment, if successful, could greatly impact the healthcare of astronauts. The experiment itself will cost just £70!
The team that designed the experiment consists of; Mahdi Baksh and Amin Habib from Morpeth School; Phoebe Tupper, Emily Yeomans and Deanna Middleton from Gumley House Convent School; and Laurence Cook from Hampton School. The members had this to say about their experience:
Winning the whole competition was immense, the feeling is still a bit surreal. – Amin Habib
Winning the competition was absolutely amazing; I couldn’t quite comprehend what was happening as it came as such a shock…hopefully winning this competition will open many doors! – Deanna Middleton
It was great to learn from all those experienced people, and it was a nice surprise that our experiment won…thanks for an amazing experience! – Emily Yeomans
To win was fantastic, our team never thought we would win…I felt like I was over the moon…this will definitely help me in my future. Mahdi Baksh
We’ll be back soon with information on the second experiment!