The liquor delivery is part of a research project, spearheaded by Suntory, to see how space affects alcohol’s aging process. The experiments will take place over the next year, and will then be sent back to Earth for analysis.
"Our company has hypothesized that the formation of high-dimensional molecular structure consisting of water, ethanol and other ingredients in alcoholic beverages contributes to the development of mellowness, and we have been conducting collaborative researches on this topic," Suntory said in it statement.
As the whiskey resides in the space station, control samples will be observed in Tokyo, and undergo similar testing during the same period of time.
Japan will also conduct another study on aging, studying the long-term effects on living beings. Twelve mice were sent to ISS for that purpose.
Along with the alcohol and rodents, the spacecraft delivered tons of food and special equipment for the six astronauts currently on board the space station. These supplies were desperately needed, as three other cargo shipments, scheduled for earlier this year, failed.