Tardigrades Tough It Out
Tardigrades are tough little animals that live all over Earth. They can go dormant to survive years of being dried out, and they can handle extreme temperatures and radiation. In 2007, tardigrades survived 10 days exposed to open space outside the European Space Agency’s FOTON-M3 spacecraft.
When tardigrades were shielded from the sun’s harshest rays, they fared well. Sixty-eight percent revived after rehydration back on Earth, but many didn’t last long afterward. The survivors laid fewer eggs than normal, but those eggs all hatched healthy baby tardigrades.
[This article originally appeared in print as "Surviving One Strange Trip"]