On May 4th 2019 SpaceX launched the 17th Commercial Resupply Mission to the ISS (CRS-17). The Dragon cargo capsule was filled with more than 5,500 lbs of supplies, payloads, and science, including one MERLIN and one Polar unit designed and built by UAB EITD. This was the second time this particular dragon capsule had flown, it had visited the space station in August 2017 for CRS-12. The capsule will remain installed at the ISS for approximately 4 weeks before coming back to Earth. EITD engineers Dan Connor and Melissa Dooley were there along with the Jacobs team to assist in prepping and loading the MERLIN and Polar units for launch.

On April 2 Astronaut Anne McClain began the Rapid Freeze Operations on board the International Space Station. She completed the set up and operation of the new Glovebox Freezer within the Life Sciences Glovebox (LSG). The Glovebox Freezer successfully reached the set point temperature of -185°C before returning to ambient temperature. The functional setup and checkout was a complete success in preparation for future science experiments on the ISS.  The UAB EITD Group will serve as coordinators for the NASA Rapid Freeze Operations out of the Remote Operations Control Center here at UAB EITD. This was the first time EITD was enabled on space to ground (spoke directly to the astronaut crew) to provide support throughout the activity. 

"When SpaceX launches its resupply mission to the International Space Station in early December, it will include a unique device created by the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s engineers. With the development of the new device, scientific experiments conducted in space may never be the same.

On November 17, 2018 Northrop Grumman's Cygnus launched to the International Space Station from Wallops Island, Virginia. This unmanned launch was the tenth cargo delivery mission for Northrop Grumman. Among the 7,400 lbs of cargo were two Polar units and one MERLIN designed by UAB's Engineering and Innovative Technology Development group. This was the first launch of MERLIN since it was refurbished for continued use on the ISS. The units will help support daily activities and science experiments for the 3 man Expedition 57 crew on board the ISS.