The first experiment chosen to be conducted on board the Israeli spacecraft Beresheet2, which is set to be launched on a moon mission in 2025, will test the efficacy and durability of different drugs for astronauts on long missions in deep space.
The first selected experiment is led by Prof. Sara Eyal of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and is designed to test the stability of medicines in lunar orbit over time.
The experiment will be performed on several life-saving drugs and other types of medication which contribute to a better standard of living in space.
Researchers say that drugs that are commonly used by astronauts in space include sleeping pills, painkillers and antibiotics.
The use of drugs on space missions can be challenging due to prolonged mission times, lack of resupply, and prolonged exposure to radiation in space. In addition, the inability to evacuate team members in case of an emergency leaves no room for error, so a patient needs to be treated in space.
The experiment will help to determine which drugs are more durable in space and how they are affected by space conditions over time.
SpaceIL said the experiment will be carried out throughout Beresheet2's entire time in space. The results would be transmitted to earth, analyzed by scientists, and subsequently published for future voyages. The experiment will be conducted in a sealed container attached to the spacecraft which will remain in lunar orbit for several years. A mini-lab, developed by Israeli firm Space Pharma, will be installed in a sealed box on the spacecraft and will monitor the medicines using specialized lasers.
It will then transmit the data to a computer on board Beresheet2, which will broadcast it back to Earth.