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Rettberg, P ; Eschweiler, U ; Strauch, K ; Reitz, G ; Horneck, G ; Wanke, H ; Brack, A ; Barbier, B

Survival of microorganisms in space protected by meteorite material : Results of the experiment ’EXOBIOLOGIE’ of the PERSEUS mission

Advances in Space Research 30 (6) 1539-1545

par Administrateur - publié le

Abstract :

During the early evolution of life on Earth, before the formation of a protective ozone layer in the atmosphere, high intensities of solar UV radiation of short wavelengths could reach the surface of the Earth. Today the full spectrum of solar UV radiation is only experienced in space, where other important space parameters influence survival and genetic stability additionly, like vacuum, cosmic radiation, temperature extremes, microgravity. To reach a better understanding of the processes leading to the origin, evolution and distribution of life we have performed space experiments with microorganisms. The ability of resistant life forms like bacterial spores to survive high doses of extraterrestrial solar UV alone or in combination with other space parameters, e.g. vacuum, was investigated.