Now that we know that manned space missions to the Red Planet are so close, scientists continue to plan every step of the colonization process, determining how growing plants there will work out. A new NASA bill was passed this month by the US Congress, receiving $19.5 billion for space exploration this year. Several space agencies in the world and private and public enterprises concentrate on the first journey to Mars and a new journey to the Moon, while other scientists think about ways to survive out there.
Mars colonization is only a few years apart and we need to know how we will survive up there
They try to develop different strategies to become productive on this planet. Researchers claim that a major component which was proposed to be used as regenerative life-support system are crop plants. These systems provide help in water recycling, they scrub carbon dioxide and provide oxygen and food. There is no doubt that plants represent a must in extended manned space exploration missions. Scientists developed many researchers regarding agriculture on Mars which has also helped specialists provide Earth-based advances.
A recent paper published by Dr. Raymond M. Wheeler from the NASA Kennedy Space Center in the Open Agriculture Journal unveils a comprehensive explanation regarding several international contributions to bio-regenerative life support. He also talks about regulated environment agriculture for space colonization.
Scientists developed several studies about growing plants on Mars
Dr. Wheeler’s paper sums up several international teams’ researches relating some of them to technology transfer, a very useful and valuable method on Earth. First studies in this field started somewhere between the 1950s and 1960s, and the work pertained to Jack Myers who analyzed algae wanting to establish carbon dioxide removal and oxygen production for the US Air Force and NASA.
Back in the 1960s, Russian researchers n Krasnoyarsk, Siberia also developed studies on controlled environment agriculture and algal production. Moreover, they had also developed tests with manned ships which had their supplies based on wheat and several other crops. In the 1980s, NASA started its CELLS Program (Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems), focusing on testing regulated environment production of sweet potato, lettuce, potato, soybean, and wheat.
In the 1980s, Japanese scientists build CEEF (Closed Ecological Experiment Facility) in Aomori Prefecture to develop new studies with waste recycling systems, animals, humans, and plants. CEEF measured 150 square meters covered in plants which provided a complete diet, with water and air regeneration, for two goats and two people. Thus, probably all these studies will help us obtain palpable proofs of agriculture activity on Mars.
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