Experiment Flies Image
Three Kennedy Space Center Fixation Tubes (KFTs) filled with plants flew on the Virgin Galactic Unity 22 flight to space. (Credit: University of Florida)

Virgin Galactic’s first fully crewed spaceflight on July 11 carried NASA-supported technology. Sirisha Bandla of Virgin Galactic operated the experiment on the Unity 22 flight on behalf of the University of Florida in Gainesville. The experiment is sponsored by NASA’s Flight Opportunities program.

Bandla activated three plant-filled tubes to release a preservative at critical data-collection stages during the flight: at 1g before the rocket boost, just before entering microgravity, and after the conclusion of microgravity.

Data collected will provide a first look at human-tended payloads and conditions for conducting research on SpaceShipTwo.