For information on Project MERCCURI, please visit our new website at www.spacemicrobes.org
(This page no longer maintained, see above)
1) Space Station Microbiome. Collecting microbial swab samples from the International Space Station (ISS) and examining the microbial communities therein (via 16S sequencing)
2) Swabbing Sports and Space Events. Collecting swab samples around the country at sporting and other public events from cell phones, shoes, and various surfaces (e.g. keyboards, screens, railings etc.) These will be used for comparison to the ISS samples and for a look at microbial biogeography across a national scale. In collaboration with Jack Gilbert at the Earth Microbiome Project and the Science Cheerleaders who will be organizing and leading the sampling events.
3) Microbial Playoffs. A microbial growth competition on the ISS. A subset of samples collected at public events will be cultured at UC Davis and the “best” microbe from each environment will be sent to the ISS for a “microbial playoffs” competition. A duplicate of this experiment will be conducted on earth and the results compared. Details here.
Check out our photo page here.
Some blog/news coverage
- Science Cheerleaders Help Send Microbes to Space (11-14-13)
- Anchors learn which bacteria live in Studio 1A (Today Show, 11-12-13)
- Today Goes to Space (Today Show, 10-29-13)
- Gilbert, Tempe participate in national microbe-swabbing project (7-24-13)
- Shoe Science | Philly Shoe Fairy Blog (5-28-13)
- PWLS & Science Cheerleaders to Study Microbes in Space (5-16-13)
- Project MERCCURI | Scientific American (3-19-13)
- Cheering microbes into space (12-7-12)
- Cheering microbes into space | UC Davis News & Information (12-5-12)
- Winning teams for the Space Florida ISS Research Competition
- Citizen science in space! | SciStarter Blog (11-29-13)
- Space Florida Announces ISS Research Competition Winners at (11-29-13)