Chinese moon plant dies

Remember that cotton plant that sprouted after a Chinese space mission had put it on the dark side of the moon? It started growing only yesterday, but today it's already dead. It turned out that the night temperatures were just a bit too chilly at 170 degrees Celsius below zero.

Prof Xie Gengxin of Chongqing University, who led the design of the experiment, said its short lifespan had been anticipated. “Life in the canister would not survive the lunar night,” Xie said.

The experiment also included potato seeds, yeast and Arabidopsis, or rockcress, a small, flowering plant of the mustard family, but none of these showed signs of having sprouted.

Read more at The Guardian (Hannah Devlin)

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