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The International Space Station's Butterfly Experiment
12.07.09
ISS021-E-029873 -- Expedition 21 Flight Engineer Robert Thirsk
ISS021-E-029873 (18 Nov. 2009) --- Canadian Space Agency astronaut Robert Thirsk, Expedition 21 flight engineer, works with the new Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert 03 (CSI-03) assembly in the Kibo laboratory of the International Space Station. CSI-03 is flying two butterfly habitats during this mission and will examine the complete life cycle of the butterflies as they eat, grow and undergo metamorphosis in space. Photo credit: NASA

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Caterpillars + View full-sized image

Caterpillars live, eat and grow aboard the International Space Station, preparing to undergo metamorphosis as part of the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert – 03 experiment. The caterpillars were launched during the STS-129 shuttle mission to the station in a pair of habitats so that scientists and students on the ground could study their development and reactions to the absence of gravity. Photo credit: NASA/BioServe, University of Colorado

Monarch butterfly larvae in their cocoons + View full-sized image

Monarch butterfly larvae (scientific name Danaus plexippus) are in their cocoons aboard the International Space Station as part of the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert – 03 experiment. Photo credit: NASA/BioServe, University of Colorado

Painted Lady butterflies + View full-sized image

Painted Lady butterflies (scientific name Vanessa cardui) live in their habitat aboard the International Space Station as part of the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert – 03 experiment. Photo credit: NASA/BioServe, University of Colorado