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Astronauts returning to the moon will take plants and see how they grow under radiation – Science

Astronauts returning to the moon will take plants and see how they grow under radiation – Science

Astronauts returning to the surface of the moon, as part of the Artemis 3 mission in North America, They will take plants and an instrument to study the effects of radiation and the moon's partial gravity on their growth.

This instrument was one of three instruments chosen by NASA for the mission scheduled for September 2026, with which the United States intends to return to the surface of the moon, after the last landing of astronauts in 1972.

The area chosen for the landing of Artemis III will be… Antarctica, where there will be water ice. Once installed in this area, Scientific instruments will collect data about the lunar environment and interior and how it will be possible to support a long-term human presence on the moonThis allows NASA to prepare to send astronauts to Mars.

One of the devices, according to a NASA statement, It will be the first of its kind to monitor plant photosynthesis, growth and stress responses Caused by lunar radiation and gravity.

Plant growth and development data, along with environmental parameters measured by the device, will help scientists understand Using plants grown on the moon for human food And the Supporting life on its surface and on Mars.

Aboard Artemis III An array of seismometers will also track To monitor the seismic environment at the south pole of the Moon and characterize its geological structureEspecially the cortex and mantle.

A third instrument will measure The ability of regolith (rock debris) to spread an electric fieldwhich is an essential parameter for searching for volatile materials on the lunar surface, especially ice.

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Remember that Astronauts return to lunar orbitwithin the scope of the Artemis II mission, to September 2025.

Regarding the Artemis III mission, in addition to the details now released about the plant experiment, it is also known that the astronauts will appear for the first time in costumes with… An “elegant” touch thanks to the collaboration between Axiom Space and Prada.

In a joint statement last October, the team said The fashion brand explained that it will work throughout the entire design process, with the aim of developing solutions for materials and functions that respond to the requirements of the lunar mission.

Click on the images to see the facts in more detail

The latest version of the suit is getting a little closer to the final design, It will be in white, with several sizes available for different crew members and features adjustable capabilities to suit the peculiarities of each body.

the facts AxEMU (Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit)It is an evolution of the design used by NASA It was designed to give astronauts greater flexibility, but also greater protection against the inhospitable lunar environment.

In the words of Michael Suffredini, CEO of Axiom Space, the collaboration with Prada was not a random choice. In addition to all the brand's experience in terms of design and production techniques, the company believes that the collaboration can give a more “human” touch to the project.

Click on the images to see the prototype of the suits