Rubber Chicken in Space
A group of high school students from California launched an helium balloon sending “Camilla”, a rubber chicken, to an altitude of 36.5 kilometers. The mission of Camilla is part of an astrobiology project, that aims to find out if microbes can live at the edge of space. Camilla was launched right into a solar storm to be exposed to high-energy solar protons and she was equipped with a pair of radiation badges to measure the radiation, a ship full of instruments (four cameras, a cryogenic thermometer, GPS trackers, seven insects and 24 sunflower seeds), and a knitted space-suit.
Camilla flew twice: on March 3 and on March 10. The second launch coincided with one of the strongest proton storms of the year, with satellites reporting solar proton counts at about 30000 times normal.
Eventually Camilla returned back to Earth. […]
Walrus in the Chukchi Sea (via USGS)
This scanning electron micrograph (SEM) depicts a number of Leptospira sp. bacteria atop a 0.1. µm polycarbonate filter. (via Public Health Image Library)