ISS Crew Catches Dragon Spacecraft Using Canadarm2 Robotic Arm

Microflow, an ingenious piece of Canadian biotechnology, has arrived at the International Space Station (ISS) aboard SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft. The ISS crew used Canadarm2, the station's 17-metre robotic arm, to catch Dragon at 5:31 a.m. EST.

With Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield monitoring and assisting operations, ground controllers based at the Canadian Space Agency's headquarters and NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, used Canadarm2 to install Dragon to the station at 8:56 a.m., marking the first time this delicate operation has been controlled remotely from Earth. Dragon also transported more than a ton of supplies to the ISS, including Canadian treats from several regions of the country suggested by the general public through the CSA's "Snacks for Space" contest.

Following an initial investment of $300,000 for testing, Canada awarded the National Optics Institute (INO) a $2.3-million contract in 2011 to design, build, and test this first generation of a transportable flow cytometer for use on the ISS. Microflow will use space as a test environment to develop smaller, cheaper, and faster medical technology that can process and analyze medical samples aboard the ISS.

"Our Government is proud to support cutting-edge technology produced by Canadian companies including Microflow, the latest in biomedical technology," said the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of Industry and Minister responsible for the CSA. "This project stands to benefit all Canadians, especially those living in rural or outlying regions, for example, by allowing doctors to take blood samples and process them on site, providing diagnosis within minutes, rather than sending the sample to a lab to be processed. One day, this could be part of routine tests in a doctor's office."

Microflow will be activated for the first time this week by Canadian Space Agency Astronaut Chris Hadfield. The purpose of Microflow is to test INO's novel fibre-optic approach, enabling the realization of a miniaturized, portable and robust cytometer technology. Flow cytometers are used for a range of bioanalysis and clinical applications to diagnose health disorders. This technology is ideal for use in space and in-field terrestrial bioanalysis.


Tell Us What You Think

Do you have a review, update or anything you would like to add to this news story?

Leave your feedback
Your comment type
Azthena logo powered by Azthena AI

Your AI Assistant finding answers from trusted AZoM content

Azthena logo with the word Azthena

Your AI Powered Scientific Assistant

Hi, I'm Azthena, you can trust me to find commercial scientific answers from

A few things you need to know before we start. Please read and accept to continue.

  • Use of “Azthena” is subject to the terms and conditions of use as set out by OpenAI.
  • Content provided on any AZoNetwork sites are subject to the site Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.
  • Large Language Models can make mistakes. Consider checking important information.

Great. Ask your question.

While we only use edited and approved content for Azthena answers, it may on occasions provide incorrect responses. Please confirm any data provided with the related suppliers or authors. We do not provide medical advice, if you search for medical information you must always consult a medical professional before acting on any information provided.

Your questions, but not your email details will be shared with OpenAI and retained for 30 days in accordance with their privacy principles.

Please do not ask questions that use sensitive or confidential information.

Read the full Terms & Conditions.