News

Astronauts Grew These Chile Peppers on the Space Station

The peppers are part of a plant growing experiment aboard the International Space Station.

Published Nov 7, 2021

International Space Station orbit the earth, computer generated image ( Matthias Kulka / Getty Images)
International Space Station orbit the earth, computer generated image (Image Via Matthias Kulka / Getty Images)

Astronauts aboard the International Space Station grew some luscious-looking green chile peppers in space, and posted a video on Instagram with Japanese astronaut Akihiko Hoshide showing off their hard-won success.

The peppers are part of the space station's Plant Habitat-04 experiment, according to the post.

NASA says the peppers take about four months to grow before astronauts harvest them, eating some and sending some back to Earth for analysis. The experiment is part of NASA's efforts to figure out how to sustain crews on long missions that, unlike the space station, don't have many or any opportunities for resupply.

One such mission is Artemis, in which NASA plans to return to the moon and establish a long-term human presence there, in preparation for travel to Mars.

NASA astronaut Megan McArthur posted on Twitter that after the harvest, the space station's crew sampled their chiles with some celebratory tacos.


Sources:

Strickland, Ashley. “Astronauts Have a Taco Taste Test Using First Chile Peppers Grown in Space.” CNN, 2 Nov. 2021, https://www.kcra.com/article/astronauts-have-a-taco-taste-test-using-chile-peppers-grown-in-space/38140289.

Sempsrott, Danielle. “Plant Habitat-04.” NASA, 23 June 2021, https://www.nasa.gov/content/plant-habitat-04.

Bethania Palma is a journalist from the Los Angeles area who started her career as a daily newspaper reporter and has covered everything from crime to government to national politics. She has written for ... read more

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