On August 10, 2015, history was made on the International Space Station when astronauts sampled fresh red romaine lettuce, the first food to be grown, harvested and eaten in space. On August 12, 2015, we reported the news here as a blog post titled Astronauts Eat Space-Grown Food for the First Time. Mission 9 student researchers interested in seed germination studies should read that post, which includes video footage of the history-making meal, as well as video footage of SSEP student teams reporting on Mission 5 and 6 seed germination experiments at the SSEP National Conference.

Glenn PenkoffLidbeck, a Community Program Co-Director in Mission 9 community East Lyme, CT, just sent the following email:

This link [below] has an excellent 3-min. video showing how NASA is learning about germinating seeds in microgravity conditions. Might be useful for SSEP introduction (a little technical for lower grades, but still offers some great info which students can build on).

How the ISS Astronauts Grew Their Space Lettuce

We wanted to share that video below, which was released by NASA Johnson Space Center on September 23, 2015.


The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) is a program of the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) in the U.S., and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education internationally. It is enabled through a strategic partnership with NanoRacks LLC, working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory. SSEP is the first pre-college STEM education program that is both a U.S. national initiative and implemented as an on-orbit commercial space venture.

The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), and Subaru of America, Inc., are U.S. National Partners on the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program. Magellan Aerospace is a Canadian National Partner on the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program.

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