Monday, February 25, 2008

Kimchi Space Food

South Korean astronaut Ko San will have space kimchi aboard International Space Station. Though Ko San will not have to go without his beloved kimchi, I can't help but wonder about his co-astronauts. "Dude! Open an airlock! That stinks!"

From New York Times:

“The key was how to make a bacteria-free kimchi while retaining its unique taste, color and texture,” said Lee Ju-woon at the Korean Atomic Energy Research Institute, who began working on the project in 2003 with samples of kimchi provided by his mother.

Ordinary kimchi is teeming with microbes, like lactic acid bacteria, which help fermentation. On Earth they are harmless, but scientists feared they could turn dangerous in space if cosmic rays and other radiation cause them to mutate.