Science and tech never leave a single opportunity in leaving us stunned. Be it the discovery of anything, or a mechanism to solve a problem, science always amazes us. One such instance is NASA growing vegetables in space. Yes, that’s true, read below to find more.
Nasa Grows First Radish Crop
NASA has been able to achieve a new feat. Well as per the latest reports, NASA has been able to grow radishes in the space under microgravity section in the International Space Station. By this, NASA has been able to make quick development in the field of plant growing science.
NASA is all about sending astronauts to know more about the universe up above there. It has plans to send people to have an insight into Mars and Moon. And for this, they need healthy astronauts. One of the methods to keep astronauts healthy is to nourish them with the appropriate amount of nutrition. How can this be achieved? Well, this can be accomplished if we provide the astronauts with fresh and healthy produce, keep them nourished and providing them with healthy foods just like they would get at the home.
Nasa Grows Crop In Space
And producing vegetables like radish in space is a step further in this thought. Now the astronauts won’t be deprived of fresh produce when they have to live in the space above for long-duration space projects.
While this new research has been proved to provide a homey touch to the astronauts, it has made advancements in the scientific field as well. During the research, the European research giant International Space Station has also made a discovery. It has reported that plants show the best response if they are kept under red and blue lights in their developing years.
For this research, radishes were chosen for a reason. See radishes are an ideal plant for this type of research. One of the main reasons as to why they are a model plant is the fact that they have a shorter cultivating period than the other similar plant. Also, the reason that radish is genetically the same as the Arabidopsis. Arabidopsis is nothing but a class of plants that are used for research in space.
First Radish Crop In Space Under Microgravity
Another reason for cultivating radish in space is that it is edible, rich in nutrients and can be grown easily. Now since there is no gravity in space to hold the roots of the plant tight in the space, plants in the above space are cultivated in pillows. These pillows are generously useful as they help to provide the plant evenly with fertilizer and water.
Let us know what these “pillows” consist of. These pillows are nothing but the alternative of a flower pot in the universe. The radishes grown in space were first sown in porous clay soil. They were then provided with the necessary amount of other things like oxygen, water, fertilizers, all released gradually in an even amount. As told earlier, the plants are responsive to red and blue lights, so the chamber in which the radish was grown consisted of led lights as well.
Astronauts Grow Radish Crop In Space
These radishes were grown for a time of 27 days. All these 27 days, these crops were very precisely observed by Kennedy Space Centre, Florida. They were observed under a total of 180 cameras and sensors.
This plant habitat is a part of the NASA’s PH-02 or Plant Habitat-02 experiment. This PH-02 is further a huge part of NASA’s Artemis programme. Artemis programme is focused upon researching sustainable conditions for exploring Moon and Mars further in detail.