When NASA will send humans to Mars (the plans are there, though shaky), astronauts will need a lot of food for the trip. But the dishes to dry freeze for 2.5 years take up much space on a space ship. In flight to Mars will be every extra gram. The less we take, the better. In addition, not all of this food would be super tasty or fresh. That’s why NASA is trying to figure out how to provide astronauts a varied diet from the food that can be grown in space or on other planets.
Seeds weigh much less and occupy less space than ready-made food. Scientists from the Space center. Kennedy is experimenting with how plants and vegetables grow in a simulated space environment. In particular, in the microgravity environment of the International space station and worlds with less gravity than on Earth.
How to grow food in space
At the Kennedy center scientists are experimenting with different lighting and temperature to understand which environment is best for growing plants. They also simulate conditions on the ISS to see which plants can thrive in low-earth orbit. In the end, NASA is trying to figure out how to grow plants with minimum soil using methods such as hydroponics and aeroponika. Both of these methods do not require a large amount of land (dirt) that is also important.
Water behaves differently in low gravity. It’s weird going in balls, so it is difficult to use for irrigation of root crops. However, during the experiments, NASA was able to achieve certain success, and the first Veggie experiment led to the emergence of the red lettuce of the Romaine on a bed of clay instead of soil.
The cultivation of plants in space and on other planets will be important for future crews traveling to a long journey from our planet. The food is based on plants is not only important, but also enjoyable. Many astronauts say that “I thought I’d miss cheeseburgers or pizza, but really I want a fresh salad.”
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