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The International Space Station is Getting an Aquarium

Finally! The International Space Station is getting a little something to cheer the place up a bit: an aquarium! The tank looks a bit industrial though, and where's the de rigueur bubbling pirate's chest?

Sorry, astronauts! It turns out the fishies are someone's science experiments:

While aquariums provide a relaxing pastime for humans on Earth, recreation is not the goal behind the new Aquatic Habitat, or AQH, aboard the International Space Station. Instead, researchers will use this unique facility to look at how microgravity impacts marine life.

Sponsored by the Japanese Space Agency, or JAXA, this habitat is a closed-water circulatory system, which provides a new facility option for station research. Scientists will use the habitat to study small, freshwater fish on orbit. For the first investigations, they plan to examine the Medaka (Oryzias latipes) fish.

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