Feeds

China plans astro-farms on Mars

Researches sustainable ecosystem to provide air, water and food

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

A leading light of China’s rapidly accelerating space program has hinted that the country’s taikonauts could in time be able to grow their own food and generate oxygen from plants in bases on the Moon or Mars.

Deng Yibing, deputy director of the Beijing-based Chinese Astronaut Research and Training Center, told state-run Xinhua that research is already being carried out in a closed cabin dubbed the controlled ecological life support system (CELSS).

CELSS will in time be used in extra-terrestrial bases, with the aim being to use plants as source of sustainable supplies of air, water and food rather than having to rely on schlepping supplies into orbit.

Deng told the news service that the 300 cubic metre cabin was used successfully in a just-completed experiment to provide sustainable supplies of air, water and food for two people.

Four kinds of veg were grown, all converting carbon dioxide in the sealed cabin into oxygen and providing food for the intrepid duo.

Propelled by deep government pockets, China’s space plans are moving at some pace now with a lunar rover set to land next year and a manned expedition to follow after 2017.

Chinese scientists have also been using the country’s frequent trips into the heavens to research the effects of high energy cosmic radiation and zero gravity on farming.

Botanical boffins have apparently produced over 120 new varieties over the past 25 years by mutating regular seeds in space.

Astro-capsicum Hangjiao-5, for example, was grown from seeds mutated during the 2002 Shenzhou III mission, and is on sale across the People's Republic. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
PORTAL TO ELSEWHERE scried in small galaxy far, far away
Supermassive black hole dominates titchy star formation
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
Archaeologists and robots on hunt for more Antikythera pieces
How much of the world's oldest computer can they find?
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.