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SCV kids take gardening to space

Hatch and Sophia Siegen, residents of the Santa Clarita Valley, are 6th and 5th graders at iLEAD School and are conducting scientific experiments from this world.

Participating in iLEAD’s DreamUp to Space In a mission, a program that helps students become pioneers in space science, Siegen was able to combine gardening and his passion for space with experiments to germinate carrot seeds in space.

A little over a year after submitting the experiment, Siegens goes to the Kennedy Space Center to announce the experiment and sees it launched into space on Thursday on its way to the International Space Station.

Growth of ideas

After planting herbs, squash, carrots, tomatoes, etc. in the garden with their grandmother during quarantine, the Siegens began to wonder if these same plants would be a nutritious space food for astronauts. It was.

This took my knowledge and curiosity about space to another level, inspired by my cousin, a NASA space technology researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles.

After conducting their own research and experiments, the Siegens found that root vegetables are less likely to absorb radiation when grown in space, and that carrots are the perfect space food.

Through research, the Sequences were able to identify some of the key adaptations needed for successful gardening in a space environment with very different constraints than Earth, according to Dreamup project manager Alison Waterman. ..

Not only can carrots germinate in hydroponics in a micro-gravity environment, but they can also provide astronauts with a sustainable source of essential vitamins and nutrients, and with such small seeds many seeds. Can be taken on a long-distance space trip and cultivated on board.

Siegens submitted the experiment to DreamUp to Space and became one of the two teams chosen.

Hatch and Sophia Siegen prepare carrot seeds to send for cultivation on the International Space Station.courtesy

How to get to space

To support the project, Siegens collaborated with other iLEAD students to create a team named “Team Carrot”, with weekly virtual meetings and work to optimize space experiments. It was started.

Team Carrot also had to work on financing for the experiment, holding a funding event and even contacting the Burpee Seed Company, which chose the carrot seeds.

Virtually completing the entire experiment was the biggest challenge for Siegens, but working with people around the world, including Jacob Cohen, the chief scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center, which stimulated curiosity. It was also the greatest reward for Siegens, as it was done. They agreed to think big.

Takeoff time

“This group of young people, along with facilitators / teachers and their families, surprised us,” said Kathleen Fredette, director of the iLEAD STEAM initiative. “We couldn’t meet or carry out the optimization of the experiment, but we took a delegation of 40 people to the Kennedy Space Center, where the team presented their ideas and launched them on the ISS at SpaceX 22. I will see the experiment that will be done. ”

Upon arriving at the ISS, an experiment with Team Carrot’s burpee carrot seeds will proceed for 30-45 days in parallel with a control experiment performed on Earth.

When the samples return from space, the team is set up to analyze both samples to compare how the seeds germinated under microgravity compared to Earth. Team Carrot wants to observe root growth and cotyledons (seed leaves) in about 21 days.

To follow the Team Carrot project, please visit: ileadaerospace.org..

Start your own garden

Gardening is Great activity for kidsIt’s a great time to start your own garden, as it’s practical and educational, and National Garden Week is scheduled from June 6th to 12th.

Kristen Clicorian, Vice President of Marketing at Burpee, said: “Through the process of germination, they can see how the plant grows little by little every day.”

Hatch and Sophia Siegen prepare carrot seeds to send for cultivation on the International Space Station.courtesy

SCV kids take gardening to space Source link SCV kids take gardening to space

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