Hemp In Space

Researchers involved in biomedical research centered around hemp will have a new environment in which to conduct their studies, within the walls of the International Space Station (ISS).

Thursday, October 4, Lexington, Kentucky-based startup company Space Tango announced that they would be partnering with online cannabidiol (CBD) retailer Anavaii Market and ag-tech company Atalo Holdings to launch a new venture focused on the potential “enhancement and bioengineering” of hemp.

With Andrew R. Graves as chairman, Atalo Holdings’ ties to hemp cultivation date back to 1800.

Space Tango manufactures compact, microwave-sized clean room boxes called Cube Modules which fit into larger TangoLab containers and are designed to house microgravity experiments in the limited confines of the ISS.

“Each time a new type of physics platform has been successfully harnessed such as electromagnetism, it has led to the exponential growth of new knowledge, benefits to mankind and capital formation,” said Space Tango founder and Chairman Kris Kimel in a press release. “Using microgravity, we envision a future where many of the next breakthroughs in healthcare, plant biology and technology may well occur off the planet Earth.”

According to Kimel in an interview with Tech Crunch, Space Tango already has two micro-laboratories on the ISS and sends payloads up around six times a year.

“When we send plants to the International Space Station, we eliminate one core constant force to which plants are well adapted—gravity,” said Space Tango Advisory Team member Dr. Joe Chappell in a statement. “When plants are stressed, they pull from a genetic reservoir to produce compounds that allow them to adapt and survive.”

Space Tango hopes that experiments conducted 250 miles up in low orbit will result in improvements for life on Earth and inspire the next generation to continue to explore the potential benefits that space-based research has to offer.