Professor’s microgravity research heading for International Space Station


A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, with the Dragon spacecraft onboard, launches at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in June 2017. (Courtesy NASA/Bill Ingalls)

Henry Donahue, Ph.D., chair of the Virginia Commonwealth University Department of Biomedical Engineering, will further his research into space travel health impacts this week when SpaceX launches its Dragon spacecraft bound for the International Space Station.

The SpaceX flight to resupply crews on the orbiting laboratory will carry many scientific experiments, including Donahue’s, seeking to benefit future space explorers and improve life on Earth.

The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space, which manages the ISS U.S. National Laboratory, has accepted Donahue’s proposal to analyze age-related changes in muscle and bone function as part of one of the research projects.

“It’s a unique opportunity to look at microgravity in space,” said Donahue, the VCU College of Engineering Foundation Professor.

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