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Mission Control
Answers Your Questions

From: In-Kyung Lee, of Austin, Texas
To: Kelly Beck, flight director

Question: How do scientists conduct controlled experiments in space? What do scientists hope to learn about life in space?

Answer: In-Kyung Lee:

When scientists conduct an experiment in space, they typically have a control experiment running on the ground to be able to compare the ground experiment with the microgravity experiment onboard the space station. In addition, the equipment used to conduct the experiment is uniquely designed to operate in space. Scientists hope to learn many things about life in space to enable humans to live and operate in space more safely and efficiently. These include things such as how to counteract space sickness, determine why fluid shifts occur in the body, determine why medicine doesn't always react the same in microgravity as on Earth, investigate ways to counteract muscle atrophy and calcium loss, look at why the body produces enzymes at different levels and rates in space, determine why red blood cells are produced and cleansed from the body at a different rate in space, and many other questions.

Gary Ford - STS-111 Lead Assembly and Checkout Officer

View a list of answered questions or ask MCC your own question.

Curator: Kim Dismukes | Responsible NASA Official: John Ira Petty | Updated: 06/09/2002
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