Use of Reduced Gravity Simulators for Plant Biological Studies

Raúl Herranz*, Miguel A. Valbuena, Aránzazu Manzano, Khaled Y. Kamal, Alicia Villacampa, Malgorzata Ciska, Jack J. W. A. van Loon, F. Javier Medina

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


Simulated microgravity and partial gravity research on Earth is a necessary complement to space research in real microgravity due to limitations of access to spaceflight. However, the use of ground-based facilities for reduced gravity simulation is far from simple. Microgravity simulation usually results in the need to consider secondary effects that appear in the generation of altered gravity. These secondary effects may interfere with gravity alteration in the changes observed in the biological processes under study. In addition to microgravity simulation, ground-based facilities are also capable of generating hypergravity or fractional gravity conditions whose effects on biological systems are worth being tested and compared with the results of microgravity exposure. Multiple technologies (2D clinorotation, random positioning machines, magnetic levitators, or centrifuges) and experimental hardware (different containers and substrates for seedlings or cell cultures) are available for these studies. Experimental requirements should be collectively and carefully considered in defining the optimal experimental design, taking into account that some environmental parameters, or life-support conditions, could be difficult to be provided in certain facilities. Using simulation facilities will allow us to anticipate, modify, or redefine the findings provided by the scarce available spaceflight opportunities.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press Inc.
Number of pages25
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
ISSN (Print)1064-3745
ISSN (Electronic)1940-6029

Cite this