Astronauts aren’t the only ones living on the International Space Station. We’ve been swabbing surfaces CSI: NY style to see how many fungi and bacteria also call it home
?? Actually, we do quite a bit of testing and analysis up here. NASA Astronaut Kayla Barron and NASA Astronaut Raja Chari took samples of air that I analysed after they were exposed to agar and incubated for a couple of days at 22-23 °C.

We also take samples of drinking water, recycled water and condensate and measure noise, trace gas contamination and more – it’s a real living lab ? As the Station’s getting older and we’re living up here for 6-12 months at a time, regular monitoring is important to keep us safe and healthy. It also allows scientists to study which microbes grow in such a unique closed environment.