Yesterday was a relatively easy day, which is always kind of nice at the end of the week. Not that I didn’t have a full schedule - we always have activities from our morning Daily Planning Conference, or DPC, (somewhere around 7:30 in the morning) to our evening DPC (somewhere around 19:30). However, tasks can be more or less complex and more or less “routine”.
Running a new experiment that has not been performed before, which requires a complicated setup, a lot of coordination with the ground or delicate operations is of course a lot more demanding than performing tasks that I have done before and that I can perform autonomously – let’s say sampling the water or removing/installing lockers in our Express racks (modular racks that can support a variety of science operations and are continuously reconfigured depending on current and upcoming ops).
Simple or routine tasks that do not require a lot of support from the control centers are usually inserted in our schedule as “pink activities” – the writing is pink on our planning viewer, indicating that you can do them whenever you want, as long as they are done by the end of the day.
For non-pink activities, on the contrary, there is an expectation that they be performed more or less on time. Some tasks are even “blue-boxed” – a thick borderline around the activity on the viewer indicates that the time is to be strictly observed. Typical blue-boxed activities are live interviews with media or public calls with VIPs, which require a complex setup on the ground to provide audio and video connection with the party on the other side for the agreed time.
Most experiments are not blue-boxed, but they are also not pink. That’s because very often specialists very familiar with the experiment operations, and sometimes the principal investigator himself/herself, are available on space-to-ground for any assistance or real-time troubleshooting that might be required. In many cases, you don’t get a second chance to get an experiments right (at least not until you fly up new samples or equipment), so it’s important to have the maximum support available in case problems are encountered.
Talking about science, today I worked a little bit with the JAXA experiment ANISO tubule. I’ve performed several runs of this experiment, each one consisting (from my side) of a sequence of activities spread over multiple days.
Let’s say that today is day 1: you retrieve a new sample chamber, like the one in the pictures, and with a syringe you slowly inject 1,5 ml of water. Then you put the chamber in MELFI for 96 hours at +2C! This simulates winter and promotes good germination of the Arabidopsis seeds. Then the chamber is moved to ambient temperature for about 4 more days (spring has arrived!) and finally, after adding more water, two days of observation in the fluorescence microscope begin, with scientists on the ground directly studying live images from ISS.
We have known for a long time that plants grow differently in weightlessness. Since they don’t “feel” gravity up here, they tend to grow a thinner and longer stem. In fact, the ANISO scientists have even done the opposite on the ground, putting seeds in a centrifuge and showing that in “hypergravity” they grow shorter and thicker stems. The difference is likely due to different orientation of microtubules in the individual cells that change their shape. I find it fascinating that something as small as a cell would be affected by gravity, but it is!
A particular group of proteins, called MAPs, control the orientation of the microtubules and hence the shape of the stem. Now, you can’t really see microtubules and MAPs directly in the fluorescence microscope, but these Arabidopsis plants have been engineered in such a way that they also produce a fluorescent protein that accurately mimic MAPs: and that does the trick! Now you can use the fluorescence microscope to indirectly observe proteins that you otherwise would not see. Fascinating, isn’t it?
Sounds a bit paradoxical, but microgravity is really a great place to study gravity response of plants, which in turn can help optimizing agricultural practices. I don’t have a background in life sciences, so this is all very new to me, but I hope you find it as intriguing as I do!
Futura mission website (Italian): Avamposto42
(Trad IT) Traduzione in italiano a cura di
(Trad FR) Traduction en français par ici: https://spacetux.org/cpamoa/category/traductions/logbook-samantha
(Trad ES) Tradducción en español por
(Trad DE) Deutsch von http://www.logbuch-iss.de
This hacker identified as Chameleons fan.
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Well Done AMC, For Keeping Him In The Family. The New 2-Year Deal With The Network Has Him Continue As An Executive Producer And Episode Director On Both The Main "The Walking Dead" Show And The Upcoming Companion Series/Spinoff, While Allowing Him To Develop New Projects For The Network.
Hmmm So Does That Mean If Nicotero Has A 2-Year Pact For Both Shows That Maybe A Season 7 Of "The Walking Dead" Is In The Works? We Can Only Hope, Don't You Agree My "The Walking Dead" Lovers? Being Season 6 Is Already Official. But AMC Has Yet To Confirm The Premiere Date. Its Usually Around The Second Sunday In October, But Keep Every October Sunday Free.
I ♥ The Walking Dead...
They also mentioned the enzyme for digesting milk,. which is also recent. There is no doubt that I have that gene - I am a big milk drinker, but I have heard that it is mostly Caucasians and Africans who possess it- races with a cattle herding culture. People of Asian descent and I think Mediterranean are more likely to be lactose intolerant. Being able to digest milk was a big survival advantage - a few percent which sounds small, but is enough to change the gene pool in just a few generations.
They are not quite as sure about white skin, but increased UV sensitivity might also help with vitamin D formation during the dark winters of northern Europe.
I put my 2nd video up last night which consists of footage of the places in these photos :). I will link to the video in the first comment to this post!
The location is the beautiful Hama-rikyu Gardens (浜離宮恩賜庭園, Hama-rikyū Onshi Teien) on a rainy spring day. I was lucky enough to catch the very first plum blossoms and cherry blossoms of the year.
And then I took a boat along the Sumida River where I was able to see gorgeous Tokyo skyline views and some of the 12 bridges that run along the river (all very visually appealing!). Such an interesting array of architecture in Tokyo!
Hope you enjoy!
(and if you want to see the video just read the first comment to this post here for the link...)
These photos look better and make more sense with the text over on my photography blog (with more info):
Taken in Tokyo as a guest of Sony (cameras used: Sony A7S and the RX 100 iii)-
* Obligatory book information :):*
As mentioned above, my New York City photography book full of my photography and writing released in stores/online worldwide recently.
Here is info on how to purchase the book online and in stores:
There are a few options online:
1 - The book sold out three times on Amazon U.S. but is thankfully FULLY back in stock (sigh of relief). You can order it here:
2 - The book is also in stock over at Barnes and Noble. You can either pick up a copy in store or you can always order it online there:
4. - The book is available in the U.K. in Waterstones, Foyles, The Guardian Bookshop, WHSmith, Blackwell’s, etc.. as well as Amazon U.K. here:
5* The book is also available in a ton of other stores here in the U.S. including Walmart, the Strand, as well as many other independent retailers. It is also available throughout Europe, Australia, and parts of Asia.*
* Full information about the book (sample pages, retail and online ordering and buying info, photos, info about my background) here:
#travel #tokyo #japan #sakura #plumblossom #sonyintokyo #beautiful #pretty #skyline #city #urban #love
- Sarugu BlogBlogger, 2006 - present
- ConfidentialSEO Analyst/Consultant, 2011 - 2012
- USA Web Solutions, NY 10036SEO Analyst, 2009 - 2010
I’m cool, simple and open minded; Positive+ and Smiling+ is my attitude.
I’m a tree hugger. I won’t hurt the people who like trees and nature. ;) .
No Life without Trees! --> For everyone that is my four words.
Interest: Photography, Google+, Fun Stuff (No GIF), Nature Stuff, Kitty, Loll cats, Animal lover, etc. Mostly I will share cool and useful internet stuffs here at Google+ to the Public, Extended Circles or to my Circles only. It may be related to my work, studies, tips and tricks or personal photos.
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