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DAMA mission

The DAMA mission logo

The DAMA scientific mission included few research experiments on the “DArk MAtter”, hence the name. The mission has been assigned to the ESA astronaut and Italian air force colonel Roberto VITTORI that flew to the ISS on board the shuttle “Endeavour” in the STS-134 mission. The shuttle was launched on 16 may 2011 and returned to the earth on 1 june 2011. During the 15 day in space 3 Kayser Italia payloads carried out a total of 8 scientific experiments:

Two BIOKIS experiment containers, both based on KI standard BIOKON units, were used to host the follow investigations:

Arabidops-ISS  On the role of cytoskeleton in gravisensing and the genes involved in the ROS signaling chain
Photoevolution Exposure of selected resistant strain of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii 
nDose Assessment of the neutrons component of the radiations exposure in space
Tardkiss Alteration of tardigrades behaviour
3DISS DNA on Diamond Dosimeters on board the ISS
HiDOSE To measure the exposure dose to charged particles for biology experiments
BioS-Spore Assessing spore and yeast capabilities in space



The BIOKIS experiment containers


The BIOKIS units ready for the launch

The I-FOAM experiment aimed to test the capability of a polymeric foam to restore complex geometric forms. During the run the behavior three different samples with different geometries have been heated up to 100° for 15 minutes. Images of the samples have been recorded inside the payload and downloaded on ground. Experiment results have provided many useful information and indicate that the material could be used on innovative actuators devices, or in structures able to expand and to get in place automatically.

The I-FOAM payload unit 

Kayser Italia supported the pre-launch biological samples integration with a team of specialists at the NASA Kennedy Space Center. The STS-134 launch was planned on 29 apr 2011 but it was delayed due to a problem on the Auxiliary Power Unit. That requested the integration team to download and refresh the Arabidops-ISS and Photoevolution biological samples that couldn’t support a such long delay.