ExoLab experiment operational on the ISS!
Building on years of success with its exciting CanSat program, Magnitude.io has developed another hands-on educational experience: the ExoLab. The hardware for this classroom investigation is a specialized growth chamber similar to mini-laboratories on the International Space Station. Students grow an Arabidopsis thaliana plant in their classroom ExoLab while following along with a concurrent plant experiment on the ISS. The class receives real-time data from the ISS that students can analyze and compare with their ground-based lab. It’s an amazing way to learn basic biology, practice working with datasets, and investigate how gravity affects living things.
The classroom ExoLab comes with:
- A self-contained growth chamber with sensors that send data over Wi-Fi
- Arabidopsis seeds with growth medium and nutrients
- An online Learning Management System with access to real-time ISS data, lessons mapped to Next Generation Science Standards, and student-friendly data analysis tools
- Professional Development sessions to prepare teachers to use ExoLab with their students
Possible ways to cover the cost of the ExoLab classroom kit include applying for local and state grants, seeking crowdfunding through sites such as DonorsChoose, and contacting the ISS National Lab and Magnitude.io about subsidizing this purchase. Educators participating in the National Lab’s Space Station Ambassadors program will receive updates whenever such opportunities are announced.