The first tomato grown in space, which went missing 8 months ago, was found by NASA astronauts

It’s one of the universe’s greatest mysteries—the first tomato grown in space disappeared.

That means, as of this week, seven astronauts on the International Space Station declared They discovered the rogue fruit on the 25th anniversary of the orbiter.

„We may have found something that someone has been looking for for a while,” said NASA astronaut Jasmine Mokbeli.

Tomatoes were first harvested and grown in space. It was raised by American astronaut Frank Rubio in March Recorded For longest space flight at 370 days.

Red Robin tomatoes were harvested as part of NASA’s experiment To grow produce In space for future long-duration missions. Rubio said it was a proud moment, until the day he lost track of a commodity in space — fresh, succulent food.

Astronaut Frank Rubio grows tomato plants on the ISS

NASA


„I harvested what was the first tomato in space and put it in a little bag,” Rubio recalled in a NASA interview. In October. He said he ended up taking the tomatoes out of the safety of a Ziploc bag to show off the prizes to some students, but then misplaced them.

„I was pretty confident that I had Velcroed it where I needed to Velcro it, and then I came back and it was gone,” the scientist said.

Rubio said he spent about 18 to 20 hours searching unsuccessfully for the tomato, and assumed it was „too dry to tell what it was” and had been thrown into the trash by accident.

Due to the weightlessness of space, any unsecured or tethered object is likely to float. And the ISS is larger than Six bedroom houseLone-ranger tomatoes have plenty of good hiding places.

A red robin tomato growing on a vine on the ISS

NASA


In the months since the juicy produce disappeared, some suspect that Rubio actually ate the tomatoes — something he denied until discovered.

„I hope someday someone finds it, some little shriveled thing in a Ziploc bag and they can prove I didn’t eat tomatoes in space,” he half-jokingly, half-revealed in October.

Mogbeli was actually quick to clear Rubio’s name after announcing the discovery.

„Our good friend back home, Frank Rubio, was charged for eating tomatoes for a while, but we can get him off,” he said.

Mokbeli did not provide details on where the tomatoes were sourced from and in what condition. But it’s safe to assume it won’t feature in a good meal anytime soon.

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