Space Seeds for Asian Future 2013 (SSAF2013) - 07.05.18

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
Students in Asia compare plant growth in space and those on the ground to learn the importance of space biology research. This is a simple plant culture experiment for education, training and basic science. Azuki seeds will be packed and launched. Seeds will be watered and incubated under dark condition with light-shield bag in the JEM. Seedlings are monitored their germination, growing direction with JEM internal camera. High quality image will be down linked and to be distributed to the participating Asian countries.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by Muneo Takaoki, Nobuyoshi Fujimoto, Kazuhiro Miyazaki, Shigeki Kamigaichi, Sachiko Yano, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Information provided courtesy of the Japan Aerospace and Exploration Agency (JAXA).
Experiment Details


Principal Investigator(s)
Muneo Takaoki, Space Environment Utilization Center, Ibaraki 305-8505, Japan
Nobuyoshi Fujimoto, Space Environment Utilization Center, Ibaraki 305-8505, Japan
Kazuhiro Miyazaki, Space Environment Utilization Center, Ibaraki, Japan
Shigeki Kamigaichi, Space Environment Utilization Center, Ibaraki 305-8505, Japan
Sachiko Yano, JAXA Space Environment Utilization Center, Ibaraki, Japan

Thomas Djamaluddin, National Institute of Aeronautics and Space, Bandung 40173, Indonesia
Clara Yatini, National Institute of Aeronautics and Space, Bandung 40173, Indonesia
Fenny M. Dwivany, School of Life Science and Technology, Bandung 40132, Indonesia
Riskita Eshanti, School of Life Science and Technology, Bandung 40132, Indonesia
Mohd Helmy Hashim, Malaysia Space Agency (ANGKASA), Putrajaya, Malaysia
Mohd Fairos Assilam, Putrajaya, Malaysia
Mohammed Selamat bin Madom, Malaysian Agriculture Research and Development Institute, Selangor, Malaysia
Sawat Tantiphanwadi, National Science and Technology Development Agency, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand
Namchai Chewawiwat, National Science and Technology Development Agency, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand
Kirana Thewa-Aksor, National Science and Technology Development Agency, Pathumthani 12120, Thailand
Doan Minh Chung, Space Technology Institute, Hanoi, Vietnam
Nguyen Vu Giang, Space Technology Institute, Hanoi, Vietnam
Naomi Mathers, Australian National University, Mt Stromlo, Australia

Tsukuba Space Center, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan

Sponsoring Space Agency
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)

Sponsoring Organization
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency

Research Benefits
Information Pending

ISS Expedition Duration
March 2013 - September 2013

Expeditions Assigned

Previous Missions
Space Seed for Asian future(Increment (Increment 25-26)

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Experiment Description

Research Overview

  • It is a pressing need to demonstrate that the ISS is valuable not only for its partners but for all nations in the world, utilizing plain and simple examples.
  • People in Asia-Pacific region will learn the value and merit of space biology research though their familiar plant materials.
  • The purpose of this program is to help Asian nations to build up their overall capacity for space utilization activities, including scientific research planning, mission integration and outreach programs as well as education. High quality video/still image will be taken at critical stages of the plant growth. The images will be distributed participating Asian space agencies, where scientists engineers and students will be able to observe their growth in orbit and compare with those of ground control plants.

Information Pending

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Space Applications

  • The results greatly help deepening our understanding to cellular mechanosensing process.
  • The biological sensing of mechanical signals, including gravity, is one of the key functions for life. The information about cellular mechanical sensors is essential for many fields of biomedical applications including tissue and organ regeneration technology.

Earth Applications

  • Showing the invaluable merit of the ISS to people in Asia-Pacific region to obtain their material and moral supports.
  • Greatest educational benefit.
  • Sponsoring space agencies in Asia-Pacific region will build their capability to coordinate space experiments and will become new users of space utilizations.

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Operational Requirements and Protocols
Information Pending

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Decadal Survey Recommendations

Information Pending

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Results/More Information

Well over 1,000 students from 4 Asian countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam) participated in this program (Space Seeds for Asian Future 2010-2011), allowing them an opportunity to grow "space seeds" retuned from the Kibo laboratory. Various domestic programs were conducted by the local agencies including: Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB, Indonesia); National Institute of Aeronautics and Space (LAPAN, Indonesia); National Space Agency (ANGKASA, Malaysia); Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI, Malaysia); Ministry of Education (MOE, Malaysia); Department of Agriculture (DOA, Malaysia); National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA, Thailand); and Tay Nguyen Institute of Biology and Space Technology Institute of the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (TNIoB/VAST and STI/VAST, Vietnam).

Indonesia received 2 kinds of space seeds, tomato and garden balsam. The tomato seeds were distributed to students during a science competition at Space Science Festival in 2011, and the garden balsam seeds were distributed to students during 2012 L’Oreal Girls Science Camp and 2012 Kalbe Junior Science Award.
Results from the space flight tomato seeds showed that water imbibtion was supported but chemical content in the seed slowed the germination rate. The plant growth from the space flight seed was initially better than the control, but the end point did not indicate a statistical difference.

Malaysia sent its original strain of chili (MC-11) seeds to space. ANGKASA established a local committee to conduct this program. The committee consists of MARDI, MOE, and DOA and ran both education and research programs. As an education program, the Malaysia Space Seed Program Competition was open to all secondary students in Malaysia. Schools are only allowed to send in 1 team, which comprises a maximum of 20 students supervised by 4 teachers.

In Thailand, 17 schools received the chili seeds from the hands of the Minister of the Ministry of Science and Technology at the Siam City Hotel in Bangkok. The event was held by NSTDA and there were many dignitaries including JAXA representative in Thailand and newspersons attended. Both the Minister and the NSTDA director wore the astronaut jumpsuits specially designed for this event. About 100 people were in attendance, and the event generated interest from more than 20 news publications.

STI/VAST participates in this program as a condition and sees it as good luck for such a young institute to pioneer the field of space technology in Vietnam. The seed program was launched in Vietnam in June 2010 organized by STI and TNIoB. Vietnam has sent 3 different kinds of flower seeds: garden balsam, snapdragon, tropical sage.

SSAF is a serial program which continues to evolve. Successor missions with growing number of participating institutions and increasing sophistication are under development.

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Results Publications

    Soga K, Kurita A, Yano S, Ichikawa T, Kamada M, Takaoki M.  Growth and Morphogenesis of Azuki Bean Seedlings in Space during SSAF2013 Program. Biological Sciences in Space. 2014; 28: 6-11. DOI: 10.2187/bss.28.6.

    Esyanti RR, Dwivany FM, Almeida M, Swandjaja L.  Physical, chemical and biological characteristics of space flown tomato (Lycopersicum esculentum) seeds. Journal of Physics: Conference Series. 2016; 771(1): 012046. DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/771/1/012046.

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Ground Based Results Publications

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ISS Patents

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Related Publications

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Related Websites

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