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Executive Summary
Pages 1-2

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From page 1...
... Although the development of specific recommendations is deferred until the final report, this interim report does attempt to identify programmatic needs and issues to guide near-term decisions that the committee has concluded are critical to strengthening the organization and management of life and physical sciences research at NASA. This report also identifies a number of broad topics that represent near-term opportunities for ISS research.
From page 2...
... INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES The International Space Station provides a unique platform for research, and past studies have noted the critical importance of its research capabilities to support the goal of long-term human exploration in space.1 Although it is difficult to predict the timing for the transition of important research questions from ground- to space-based investigations, the committee identifies in this interim report a number of broad topics that represent near-term opportunities for ISS research. These topics, which are not prioritized, fall under the following general areas: • Plant and microbial research to increase fundamental knowledge of the gravitational response and potentially to advance goals for the development of bioregenerative life support; • Behavioral research to mitigate the detrimental effects of the spaceflight environment on astronauts' functioning and health; • Human and animal biology research to increase basic understanding of the effects of spaceflight on biological systems and to develop critically needed countermeasures to mitigate the negative biological effects of spaceflight on astronauts' health, safety, and performance; • Physical sciences research to explore fundamental laws of the universe and basic physical phenomena in the absence of the confounding effects of gravity; and • Translational and applied research in physical sciences that can provide a foundation of knowledge for the development of systems and technologies enabling human and robotic exploration.

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