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NASA bets the farm on the long-term viability of space agriculture

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posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:01 PM
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Dear NASA: I can do it better, cheaper, and simpler. You know where to find me.




posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:09 PM
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a reply to: netwarrior

The exactly my point,

How many of us " regular folk " most likely have ideas and concepts or even the creative conceptual ability to think around problems and arrive at solutions, only to not even be looked at because you didn't get the same breaks as others in life?

It just seems like we're shooting ourselves in the foot here, wasting so much talent and time.

It's a damn shame, so much waste.

Much more innovation happens outside of the realms where it matters, the biggest mistake companies and organizations make is vetting their talent via degrees and acomplishments, when many don't use such things as measurements of their skills and talents.
edit on 9-2-2017 by Tranceopticalinclined because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:27 PM
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It is going to be tough to grow bacon in space.
We need Star Trek replicators.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:33 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

you`re right
it takes about 9 square feet of land to grow enough wheat for just 1 loaf of bread. they are going to need a gigantic ship to get to mars if they plan on growing their own food.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:33 PM
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a reply to: Tranceopticalinclined

Bingo. I ceased my collegiate career path once I realized I was being taught by instructors that did not know how to apply what was being taught in our ridiculously overpriced textbooks. Example: My botany professor had a *doctorate* in botany but limited practical knowledge. She killed our class project and was utterly clueless as to the cause. I had to tell her what she'd done wrong.

A Doctorate holder being taught basic horticultural concepts by an undergraduate student. Funny, until you realize I paid $4000 for that life lesson.

Hell, I can read the book.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:43 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

Yep I watched the video, I would imagine the nutrients would come from human waste



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:46 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

I would imagine this is why NASA is doing studies.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 12:56 PM
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Doing some research on rabbits, I stumbled on this (old) article called "Rabbits On Mars: One Giant Leap".
I assumed that they would be used as a food source, but, instead they would provide fertilizer for crops and companionship for colonists. Rabbits are the 3rd most popular pet in the UK & US, they are quiet, breed like, well, rabbits, and their droppings make great fertilizer. They are also affectionate towards humans, and can provide security due to their territorial behavior (watch out alien burglars!). I'm not sure it would be feasible to maintain bunnies on the ISS, but for long-term colonization of Mars (or the Moon), they could be very beneficial additions to the cargo manifest.

edit on 292017 by seattlerat because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:03 PM
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a reply to: seattlerat

Hate to tell everyone here, those rabbits would be pets until they reproduce, and when there are ample offspring.....
edit on 9-2-2017 by seasonal because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:03 PM
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a reply to: seasonal

The problem here is not the concept, the problem is that this Onate guy, a scientist is acting like this particular experiment on board the ISS is going to evolve into a selfsustaining food farm, on the ISS which is pure BS.

He start of with this,


The habitat is the size of a mini-fridge. But instead of storing soda, it will carefully record every step in the growth of plants aboard the space station. This will allow researchers on the ground unprecedented insight into how plants are shaped by microgravity and other forces at work in outer space.


This is reasonable, they are doing a smale scale test.

He then proceeds with this,


Except for installation, the system should run with very little input and cut down on the astronomical (wink wink) cost of shipping food to the station. Currently, it costs more than $10,000 a pound to send food and other supplies hurtling upwards. That means your typical 14 ounce loaf of bread—just $3.35 here on Earth—would cost somewhere in the ballpark of $8,750 to send to space. Plus, the freshest stuff doesn’t last long. “If I pack a bag of cherry tomatoes…My tomatoes are going to only be good for a week or two maybe,” Onate says. “But if I take seeds with me, I can grow food.”


Making it sound like this small fridge sized experimental habitat will somehow turn into a selfsustaining system producing loafs of bread.

It's BS and you have to wonder why a scientist is knowingly trying to decieve you. You also have to wonder why he is succesful at it.......



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:06 PM
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originally posted by: seasonal
a reply to: AttentionGrabber

Yep I watched the video, I would imagine the nutrients would come from human waste


You really think it is possible to have a closed system in which humans live on the plants that live on their waste and nothing is lost in the process, on board of the ISS?



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:10 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

Granted, he does say this later in the article,


Ultimately, the habitat is more of a research project than a bonafide space farm. But Onate sees it as the first step in a larger mission to make human life sustainable off-world. "In the future, on Mars, if we colonize out there, resources are a premium," he says. The key will be finding a way to manage plant growth long-term, in settings we've only just begun to understand.


It is beyond me why he first acts like this is going to affect the ISS's food supply.
edit on 2/9/2017 by AttentionGrabber because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:12 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

No, but it's entirely possible to run the same system with minimized input of new materials. No system we are capable of designing will run at 100% efficiency, which is what would be required by a system that you specified. Elements are converted as part of biological processes that cannot be recycled/reused easily, but the bulk of the recycled material could certainly be reused, minimizing the weight needed to lift that equipment into orbit.

If our spacefarm strives for the goal of 100% materials reuse/recycling it would certainly fail. However, 80% is certainly attainable and would vastly improve the prospects of space colonization for humanity.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:13 PM
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a reply to: seasonal


As NASA gears up for its proposed manned missions to Mars in 2030, the space administration’s Advanced Food Technology (AFT) project is ensuring that the crew will have a completely vegan diet of fresh fruits, vegetables and even live plants. We’ve long been familiar with the traditional astronauts’ fare of liquid meals and freeze-dried food stuffs—oh, and Tang—but when considering plans to send astronauts further afield and beyond the reach of supply vessels, the AFT has found it must create healthier space-meals and methods to grow food in zero-gravity.

SOURCE

It would probably be difficult to hide the odor of rabbit-stew -- hopefully, the astronauts will be vegan prior to the mission and care enough about the lagomorphs to keep them safe from predators.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:14 PM
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a reply to: netwarrior

Like I said the concept is viable, but never going to happen on the ISS, like the guy suggested.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:17 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

I apologize. I misunderstood what you were getting at, but yeah, I agree. He's not getting any bread out of a mini-fridge. I do commend him for one thing, though. I couldn't downsize one of my systems down that much and still maintain proof of concept. I'd probably need 25-50% of a module...then again, you could make enough of that rabbit stew for the crew with mine.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 01:45 PM
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a reply to: AttentionGrabber

No, that is why NASA is studying it.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 02:52 PM
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I'd imagine that what we'd need is some serious assistance via A.I. robotic helpers, both in terms of robotic plant growers ( garden in a box )

And as far as 100% effeciency, that's only going to happen when you have basically a mini earth, in the sense that you create all of what is needed.

I think this is something we can do, on earth, there are organisms that produce each of what we need for each other to thrive, all we really need is the starter dirt, food, medium ( habitat ) and sunshine, the rest can and will naturally take shape, it's the how can we squeeze all that is needed into the smallest space possible.

Why I think this is an EVERYBODY ( all fields of study ) and not just one, most problems might be solvable by one, but the best solution derives from many, building ontop of that one.

Bottom line, if we're going to do something and expect success, we need to stop doing things halfassed.



posted on Feb, 9 2017 @ 03:13 PM
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Personally I think that plants that behave like autoflowering cannabis for example ( I realize there are many others with similar characteristics).

Freeing ourselves and plants from light cycles in space and dwarfism could aid in space for a variety of reasons such as faster production, and low space requirements.

These would also make good food source as you can eat the leaves and juice them or whatever and the seeds produce lots of nutrients.

www.youtube.com... Kush time lapse autoflower.

With unlimited power we could run a nice grow with those.



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