Kent Place School and our partner, The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education is proud to announce the selection of a student-designed experiment that will be carried out on the International Space Station (ISS) next fall. Seventh graders, Isabella Diaz, Aya Mtume, Elizabeth Wyshner and fifth graders Olivia Adamczyk, Alexandra Anderson, Nora Lee and Abigail Wall, designed an experiment titled, Tiny Wings of Glory that was selected from a pool of 99 proposals submitted by Kent Place students as part of the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP). Three-hundred Kent Place students in grades five through eleven participated in SSEP Mission 10.
The students designed an experiment to test the role of gravity in the development of Vanessa cardui or commonly known as Painted Lady Butterflies.
“Gravity plays a part in the metamorphosis process of butterflies because the butterflies have to suspend upside-down in order to pupate correctly. Since there is no up or down in microgravity, the cocoons may have a hard time,” the students explained.
Astronauts will preserve the butterflies shortly after they should have matured into the chrysalis stage during their stay aboard the International Space Station next fall. The students will also perform the same experiment on Earth in order to observe the differences between both specimens.