Space Bacteria (2012)

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A collaborative work with Jae Yeop Kim, looking at the possibilities that may emerge from advances in technology from two different environments: the Earth and the outer space. Based on the idea of transferring natural resources that are found on earth to an alternative environment, in the hope to gaining valuable outcomes, Space Bacteria proposes to harvest microbial colonies from the human body and send them for cultivation in a hostile environment such as Mars. Through synthetic biology, scientists will be able to modify human microbes to increase levels of tolerance to extreme conditions. The cultivation of bacteria in space could bring promising healthcare benefits as well as unexpected relationship between the human body and the outer space.

The proposal.
Steps to harvest human microbes and sending them to Mars.


colony plates
Human bacterial portfolio.
Bacterial species from different parts of an individual’s body were harvested and grown on culture plates. The image shows 11 different sites of the subject’s body. The proposal would use a similar protocol to prepare the microbes to send them to the outer space.

Microbial colony morphologies.
Image taken from (accessed 31st July 2012)
Microbial colonies & patterns.
Magnified images of microbes grown in the studio. Notice different shapes and patterns from one type of colony to the other.
DIY micro-gravity.
Bacterial cultures were grown inside test tubes under simulated microgravity, to mimic one of the conditions on Mars. Shapes of bacterial colonies formed were examined.
test tube culture
Zero-gravity cultures.
Different potential types of bacterial colonies that may form under zero-gravity.
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Space bacteria colony prototypes
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Space bacteria colony prototypes

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