Space Biohack & Robot Autopsy

Coinciding with the Ingenious and Fearless Companions exhibitionBOM is delighted to present the first Space Biohack, bringing together artists, scientists and enthusiasts with members of the High Altitude Bioprospecting (HAB) team and astrobiologists from NASA.

This event, taking place on the 13th to 14th of May 2016, creatively explores how research with astrobiology is contributing to novel biotechnologies and addressing gender preconceptions in the history of space exploration. Work with the High Altitude Bioprospecting science-art team to plan the next phase of the HAB’s mission. Take part in hands-on making with 3D printers, robotics, rocket science and DNA analysis and learn how to sample for bacteria and other living organisms in extreme environments.

Witness a live ‘robot autopsy’ by internationally acclaimed performance artist Kira O’Reilly and the HAB team, and hear from a distinguished panel of experts in astrobiology, including Dr. Lynn Rothschild, an evolutionary biologist from NASA Ames Research Center, and Space Gynecologist Dr. Varsha Jain whose research examines menstrual suppression and the risks of blood clots in space.

This is an essential event for anyone interested in working creatively with curiosity-driven science, and those wanting to contribute to the future development of the High Altitude Bioprospecting project.

Suitable for adults and over 14s.

Tickets must be booked in advance. To secure a place please click here. £30 full price / £25 concessions



Friday 13th May

17:00: Ingenious and Fearless Companions Exhibition Tour by Louise Latter, BOM’s Head of Programme

19:00 Live Robot Autopsy performance by Kira O’Reilly


Saturday 14th May

9.30- 10am: Registration, tea and coffee

10am: Welcome, Karen Newman, Director of BOM

10:05 – 10:30 High Altitude Bioprospecting Team in conversation (biochemist Melissa Grant, lab robotics scientist Oliver de Peyer, mathematician Paul Shepherd and artists Anna Dumitriu, Kira O’Reilly and Alex May) moderated by Louise Latter, Head of Programme at BOM

10:30 – 11:00 Keynote, Lynn Rothschild (astrobiologist, NASA Ames research Center)

11:00 – 11:30 Keynote, Varsha Jain (NASA Space Gynecologist)

11.30 – 11.45: Break

11:45 – 12:00 Bento Lab Demo: Philip Boeing, co-founder of the new Bento Lab presents the beta version of the first complete portable DNA laboratory

12:00 – 12:15: Setting design challenges: The HAB team and speakers present key challenges for group planning and prototyping and introduce demo activities

12:15 – 13:00: Lunch (participants are asked to bring their own lunch)

13:00 – 18:00 Open Making: We will have a number of 3D printers, tools and materials to work with but please bring any items you are particularly keen to use. There will be demo’s on 3D printing, robotics, rocket science, DNA analysis and how to sample for bacteria and other living organisms in extreme environments.

18:00 – 19:00 Prototype showcase and discussion


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