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HARDWARE INFORMATION

Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA)

Description
The CGBA consists of an Isothermal Containment Module (ICM): a self-contained, autonomous system providing a temperature-controlled environment in a single Shuttle middeck locker or a Mir-Priroda single stowage locker. The ICM was designed and built by BioServe Space Technologies, a NASA center for Space Commercialization jointly located at the University of Colorado and Kansas State University. The hardware utilizes thermoelectric coolers (TECs) to maintain a set temperature between 4°C and 37°C, transferring heat by way of a fluid cooling loop that circulates through all six walls of the enclosure to reduce thermal gradients.

The CGBA-ICM is designed to operate autonomously; crew interaction consists mainly of periodic status checks. Temperature profiles are automatically controlled by the ICM computer based on mission elapsed time (MET) and detection of microgravity conditions after launch from an internal accelerometer. The MET can be edited by the crew, to adjust the timing of the experiment in the event of a mission extension or early termination.

Versions of this Hardware
+ Version Used During Space Shuttle Missions
+ Version Used on SpaceX and International Space Station (ISS)

Components of this Hardware
GAP Cylinders
The modified TEC-GAP configuration consists of an aluminum GAP cylinder with auxiliary thermoelectric coolers mounted on each end cap and fitted with hydrophobic gas-permeable membranes to facilitate air exchange while providing containment. The GAPs are insulated with 0.5" Pyrell foam. Each GAP can hold a stack of nine Petri dishes, and eight GAPs can be carried in the ICM. Several TEC-GAPs at differing temperatures may be placed together in a single CGBA-ICM.

Process Control and Monitoring
The ICM is controlled by a single board computer with a PC-104 expansion bus. An RS-232 interface can be used to download data to or from a Payload and General Support Computer (PGSC).

Isothermal Containment Module (ICM)
The Isothermal Containment Module (ICM) is controlled by a single board computer with a PC-104 expansion bus. An RS-232 interface can be used to download data to or from a Payload and General Support Computer (PGSC).