Talk about a Payload…

The Stanford Daily last week reported on a joint venture between NASA and Stanford University that would putting E. coli into space.

The project, which has been dubbed GeneSat-1, has involved the launching of a new non-harmful strain of E. coli bacteria into orbit in an attempt to observe the impact that zero gravity and space radiation have on the DNA of living organisms. By studying the data that is being transmitted to Earth from the shoebox-sized project satellite, the GeneSat-1 team believes that the mission could offer insight into the health risks of prolonged manned space missions. Spearheading the GeneSat-1 mission is a host of Stanford-affiliated technologists and NASA researchers.

I wonder if this is the first time blasting the bacteria commonly found in excrement into space might actually help humanity? I don’t know, but the mission appears to have been a part of the payload in the first launch from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport. Talking about some history making bacteria … hey, at least its not in my Spinach. 🙂