Three Fishhawk Creek Elementary School students watched nine months of scientific work go up in flames last summer when an unmanned rocket carrying their experiment into space exploded less than three minutes after launch.

6th Graders Karinna , Chandrika and Casey were devastated.  They rebuilt their project, and now it’s made it to the international space station.

The mission will test how zero gravity affects cottonseed growth. That research could be useful when planning a manned mission to Mars because astronauts might have to cultivate their own crops.

SpaceX, a Los Angeles commercial space company was founded by inventor Elon Musk.

Hillsborough County is one of 25 communities flying an experiment aboard the SpaceX rocket through Student Spaceflight Experiments Program.