Space: Why are the Chinese sending fish into orbit?

Scientists decided to send fish into space to observe the effects of gravity on the human body.

cosmic fish. This week, the Chinese state news agency revealed that a small fish will be sent into Earth orbit, more precisely to the Tiangong space station. Animals that will participate in scientific research will protect future astronauts from the dangers of weightlessness.

In order to conduct this research, astronauts, as the Chinese astronauts are called, prefer to use zebrafish, which are known to be genetically similar to humans. In this case, this permettra d’observer «comment of these and other micro-organisms interagissent in the interior of an ecosystème fermé», does not know the analyzer «the perte de densité osseuse chez les astronauts» à cause of microgravity in the space.

Astronauts are in danger

Researchers want to know whether the absence or near absence of gravity could have serious physiological consequences for the health of astronauts. In fact, like Thomas Pesquet, astronauts generally have to spend approximately six months aboard the International Space Station.

According to a study conducted on the International Space Station in 2016 and published by the Japanese Space Agency in Scientific Reports, small vertebrates are less likely to survive in space than humans. They started losing bone density as soon as they arrived. According to other research, these results have been evaluated in about twenty days in humans.

Spatial seasickness in fish

So it is not the first to send fish into space. In 1973, small fish from the salt marshes of the Atlantic Ocean, called mummieships, were the subject of an experiment in Skylab. NASA’s science lab, which was orbiting Earth at the time, wanted to know how fish respond to a weightless environment. That is, if humans move on land only in two dimensions, especially under the influence of gravity, then fish move in three dimensions in water.

When astronauts experience a form of space sickness, at the start of a mission, the fish begins spinning and spinning in a loop like a clockwise. But as the days went by, they learned to orient themselves better thanks to Skylab’s artificial light. Natural sunlight never reaches the bottom of the ocean, so it always points upwards. In contrast, space-born fish immediately adapted to their weightless environment.

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