News: NASA astronaut Christina Koch returned to Earth from the International Space Station, where she set the record for the longest single spaceflight in history by a woman (328 Days)
International Space Station
- It is a space station or a habitable artificial satellite in low Earth orbit.
- It is a joint project among five participating space agencies namely NASA (USA), Roscosmos (Russia), JAXA (Japan), ESA (European Union) and CSA (Canada).
Significance of Christina Koch’s spaceflight
- Will provide researchers the opportunity to observe effects of long-duration spaceflight on a woman
- Vertebral Strength investigation: It defines the extent of spaceflight-induced bone and muscle degradation of the spine, and the associated risk for broken vertebrae. This is expected to provide insight into the development of future countermeasures, such as preventative medicine or exercise
- Microgravity Crystal’s investigation: It crystallises a membrane protein that is integral to tumour growth and cancer survival. Results may support the development of cancer treatments