Kit, Blood Collection

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    Kit, Blood Collection

    White fabric box with Velcro closing lid. Velcro on top and bottom; Velcro side tabs. Interior Velcro and elastic to secure contents during flight.

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This object is on display in the Moving Beyond Earth exhibition at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

This blood collection kit may have been used for hematology, metabolic, hormonal, or immune system research in space. Blood is a rich source of information about the status of the human body under normal and stressful conditions. Because long-duration spaceflight causes a variety of changes in bodily functions, researchers studying those effects often devise experiments that involve collecting and freezing blood samples for post-flight analysis. Comparing samples taken before, during, and after flight helps them trace and understand such changes. This kit contains gauze packets and sponges, Band-Aids, alcohol and biocide wipes, medical tape, a tourniquet, and a blood-draw device.

NASA transferred this set and a variety of other research equipment to the Museum when the Space Shuttle program ended in 2012.