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Nov 14, 2021

Tardigrades: Why water bears could be the first interstellar astronauts

Posted by in categories: health, robotics/AI, space

It’s more likely than you think.


When it comes to interstellar missions, however, there are no plans for crewed missions on the table. While there are proposals for sending robotic missions, sending astronauts to nearby stars and exoplanets simply isn’t feasible yet.

However, according to new research led by the University of California, interstellar missions could be conducted in the near future that would have tardigrades (aka. “Water Bears”) as their crew.

The study, titled “The First Interstellar Astronauts Will Not Be Human,” was conducted by researchers from UC Santa Barbara, the UCLA Health Center, the University of Florida, and Ruhr-University Bochum. It will be published in the January 2022 issue of Acta Astronautica.

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