A project by Malta's Joseph Borg will be launched into space this August, on its way to the International Space Station, where research will be carried out remotely by the award-winning scientist and his team.
The Project Maleth box, which proudly bears the Maltese flag, represents the first time that Maltese science will have found its way into space.
All samples and materials required for the experiment will be placed inside a specifically designed box, produced by a Belgian company, before being shipped to space by the Space X Falcon 9 rocket, as part of a cargo resupply.
The project team will have remote access to the capsule, monitoring the experiment via a virtual private network.
Notably, it will see the team send skin samples from diabetic foot ulcers to space, in an effort to track the effects of space on treatment-resistant bacteria.
For the project, researchers from the University of Malta’s biomedical faculty collaborated with Space Applications Services, based in Belgium. Prof Borg, the project’s leader, is an academic at the University and President of the Malta Association of Biomedical sciences.
In May, when details of the project came to light, Prof Borg was congratulated by Prime Minister Robert Abela, who acknowledged the project as Malta’s first-ever in space.
The experiment received the backing of various Government ministries, as well as Evolve Ltd, which donated €30,000 to the Research, Innovation and Development Trust (RDIT) at the University of Malta.
DOI/ Jason Borg