Loading

NASA astronaut Shannon Walker Expedition 24 flight engineer in the Kibo laboratory of the International Space Station.

2010-09-09

NASA

NASA
Washington, DC, United States

NASA astronaut Shannon Walker, Expedition 24 flight engineer, works with the Interior Corner Flow 1 (ICF-1) hardware during video recording of the Capillary Flow Experiment (CFE-1) in the Kibo laboratory of the International Space Station. CFE observes the flow of fluid, in particular capillary phenomena, in microgravity.

The Evolution of Fluid Physics Research

Fluid covers our planet, but sending fluids to space can help us better understand them. Space station fluid research began with the fundamental analysis of how fluids behave in microgravity. That research has evolved into the testing of advanced medical devices and heat transfer systems.

Rodent Research-6 tested tiny nanofluidic devices that, when implanted under the skin, could allow for the continuous delivery of drugs into a patient’s system. This process reduces the need for frequent injections or pills. A series of experiments used microgravity to study capillary forces, small forces that move a fluid along a narrow tube. Systems using capillary forces can be simpler because they rely on shapes and fluid dynamics rather than machinery to move liquid.

Why do this in space? On Earth, gravity is one of the main factors that affects how fluid flows. However, there are additional smaller forces acting on fluids. Studying fluids in space, where gravity is not a factor, helps us to better understand these small forces and use them to our advantage.

Why does it matter? An understanding of fluid physics in microgravity can influence everything from medical technologies and heat transfer systems on Earth to life support systems in space.

Details

  • Title: NASA astronaut Shannon Walker Expedition 24 flight engineer in the Kibo laboratory of the International Space Station.
  • Date Created: 2010-09-09
  • Owner: JSC
  • Album: mgwhite
  • About Title: To help you find images you’re searching for, previously untitled images have been labelled automatically based on their description

Get the app

Explore museums and play with Art Transfer, Pocket Galleries, Art Selfie, and more

Recommended

Google apps