New space station ventures are on the rise

Kate Rubins in Bigelow's BEAM
NASA astronaut Kate Rubins conducts tests and replaces parts inside the International Space Station’s Bigelow Expandable Activity Module in 2016. (NASA Photo)

RENTON, Wash. — NASA’s plan to expand commercial ventures on the International Space Station is attracting lots of interest — and not just from would-be space tourists, according to the agency official who’s keeping track of the proposals.

One of the ideas that’s most intriguing to Doug Comstock, a NASA deputy chief financial officer who serves as the liaison for commercial activities in low Earth orbit, has to do with growing artificial retinas in zero gravity.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributor to GeekWire and Universe Today, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," past president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing.

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