We use cookies to ensure our website operates correctly and to monitor visits to our site. This helps us to improve the way our website works, ensuring that users easily find what they are looking for. To allow us to keep doing this, click 'Accept All Cookies'. Alternatively, you can personalise your cookie settings.

Accept All Cookies Personalise settings

Scientific Instruments

Scientific Research and Instrumentation

The production of advanced scientific instruments and delivery of effective research projects at the cutting edge of science have featured prominently throughout QinetiQ’s many decades working in the space sector. We have developed and delivered a diverse range of instruments and experiments covering:
  • Additive manufacturing studies
  • The International Space Station (ISS): The microgravity of the ISS provides a perfect environment for ground-breaking science research. We have delivered a wide range of research projects for use by ISS astronauts - from new material technologies to heat transfer, fluid science, oxygen production. These include:

    • Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG): SODI, and Transparent Alloys, Neuf-Dix and COLIS.
    • European Drawer: HOST1 and HOST2
    • Biolab: Artemiss 
    • Human physiology: SLS and Grip/Grasp 
    • Ground Instruments: We have built two short arm human centrifuges (SAHC) for the European Space Agency (ESA) to assess the impact of centrifugal acceleration on the human body. This “artificial gravity” is used to increase our understanding of the risks astronauts may experience in space travel. For more details, read more about SAHC.
    • Payloads: Our instruments have been carried into space as payloads or as parts of payloads. For further information, refer to our ‘Postcards from Space’ blogs on ICAPS and Foton experiments.
    • Life Support Systems: Long-distance crewed space missions for exploration of new environments beyond our own Earth-Moon system might be a reality within just a few decades. Such challenging ventures require the development of effective solutions for space crafts, the supply of energy, communication systems and, of course, life support. It is not just a case of ensuring that astronauts can live in a comfortable and safe environment with conditioned air, oxygen, food, water, and waste evacuation. Advanced Life Support Systems consider waste as a resource and also aim to recycle air and water after appropriate treatment and conditioning.

QinetiQ is pioneering the development and and demonstration of new technologies to deliver effective, reliable and versatile life support capabilities. Our projects include the Waste Compartment and Microbial Electrolysis Cell, the water production and recycling system at the Princess Elisabeth Research Station, Biorat 1, BioHarvest, Green Lung, and SARY.

Contact us

Looking for more information? Click here for our contact form.