Photos
Article

by Lee Hutchinson

A Russian spacecraft containing 45 mice, 8 gerbils, and 15 newts returned to Earth on Sunday. The spacecraft, a modified Bion-M life sciences satellite, was launched in April 2013 and was intended to study the biological effects of long-term weightlessness. However, due to a combination of equipment failure and what scientists referred to as "the stresses of space," fewer than half the mice (and none of the gerbils) remained alive after their month in space. The newts were fine, though.

The low survival rate among rodents "was to be expected," according to Vladimir Sychov, deputy director of the Institute of Medical and Biological Problems, the agency conducting the experiment. The Bion-M satellite was equipped with internal cameras so that scientists could visually monitor the animals during flight, which orbited at an altitude of about 357 miles (575 km). This is far higher than the International Space Station's orbit of 250 miles (410 km).

Keep reading full story: http://arstechnica.com/science/2013/05/russian-spacecraft-returns-to-earth-with-most-of-its-furry-crew-dead/

Comments
Order by: 
Per page: 
 
  • There are no comments yet
The Social Network Buzz - Comment using your Facebook, AOL, Hotmail or Yahoo! account
Info
Administrator
The Black Vault Owner/Operator
05.20.2013 (339 days ago)
Main Space
502 Views
0 Subscribers
All News by Administrator
Share This Article
Rate
0 votes
Related News
While spiders were busy spinning webs in space, researchers on Earth weaved their knowledge of this activity into educational materials to inspire and motivate students.
15 hours ago · From Administrator
Space rocks big enough to destroy a city hit the Earth much more often than thought, according to an estimate by a private group devoted to preventing disaster from such orbital killers.
Main Space
Yesterday · From Administrator
It's so far away that even if you booked a trip on the speediest of our rockets, you'd have 100 million years to polish your Sudoku skills en route to Kepler 186f.
2 days ago · From Administrator
NASA is developing the capabilities needed to send humans to an asteroid by 2025 and Mars in the 2030s
Main Space
2 days ago · From Administrator
Russians with smartphones and dashboard cameras captured footage of a meteor that flashed across the night sky near the Arctic Circle over the weekend.
Main Space
3 days ago · From Administrator
Russian spacecraft returns to Earth with most of its furry crew dead