Adam Korbitz writes "New Scientist and Science Daily are reporting the results of an intriguing experiment in which scientists launched tardigrades or 'water bears' — tiny invertebrates about one millimeter long — into space onboard the European Space Agency's FOTON-M3 spacecraft. After 10 days in the vacuum of space, the satellite returned to Earth and the tardigrades were recovered. The tardigrades survived the vacuum just fine, but exposure to the Sun's ultraviolet radiation proved deadly for most of the water bears. However, some did survive. The tardigrades are the first animals to have survived such an experiment, a feat previously achieved only by lichens and bacteria."