Welcome to Space Microbes!

Space Microbes is all about science outreach, science art, creativity and the adventures of a PhD student in Space Microbiology! This website was created to let you know a bit more about space (micro)biology, space missions, space experiments, astrobiology research and much more!

To know more about Space Microbiology, check this Twitter course on prepared as part of #EUROmicroMOOC, the first international online course in microbiology! You can find it here!

If you want to know a bit more about Astrobiology, check my TEDx talk at TEDxUniversityofPorto here.

 News / Blog

 Coloring Book

Agora também em Português!

If you love coloring – and are curious to know more about microbes in space, there is the Space Microbes Coloring Book. It is perfect for kids, but adults have fun with it too :p

  Who am I?


I’m Marta Cortesão, a PhD Student at the Space Microbiology Research Group at the DLR (German Aerospace Center). On my PhD I am studying filamentous fungi (aka mold) and their morphological and molecular adaptation to space conditions: mainly simulated microgravity (or near weightlessness) and Radiation.

I love travelling, ballet, going to the movies, Astrobiology and everything that has to do with Space Microbes. But most of all, I love to communicate science!

What am I up to?

As a PhD student, I am involved in several projects, with different collaborators.

Space Biofilms: a NASA-funded project called Space Biofilms. We have sent Penicillium rubens (a fungus) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (a bacteria) to the International Space Station (ISS) in November 2019! You can find more about the project here.

MARSBOx: we have also sent mold and other microbes on a Balloon flight up to Earth’s stratosphere with the help of the Aerobiology Lab at NASA Ames Research Center. You can find more about this cool group here.

You can also follow my overall PhD project Fungi in Space on researchgate.

Marta Cortesão Space Microbes

Where can you find more about me?




How to get in contact?

Are you a student searching for further opportunities in the areas of Astrobiology, Space biology or Space microbiology? Drop me a message on facebook, instagram or twitter  – I would be happy to help!

Are you considering me for a science outreach activity? Let me know how we can make that happen!