Seeds Start Sprouting on the Moon

19 January, 2019, 08:31 | Author: Sidney Guerrero
  • China sprouts the first plants on the moon

After making the first-ever soft landing on the far side of the moon, China's Chang'e-4 mission pioneered the first mini biosphere experiment on the moon.

Xie Gengxin, dean of Institute of Advanced Technology at Chongqing University, and the chief designer of the experiment, praised the achievement on the university's blog.

January 14, 2019 (EIRNS)-The China National Space Administration held a press conference this morning on the ongoing Chang'e-4 mission, and future lunar exploration missions.

Many biological experiments have been carried out in low Earth orbit aboard spacecraft including the International Space Station, Mir, Salyut and Tiangong-2, and in Earth-based analogues, but this was the first test of plant growth in the low gravity, high radiation and variable temperature environment of the Moon.

"Chang'e-5 will return mission sampling from the surface of the Moon around the end of this year", said Dr Wu Yanhua, deputy director of the CNSA and deputy commander of Lunar Exploration Programme.

Harvesting food in space, ideally using locally extracted water, would mean astronauts could survive for far longer without returned to Earth for supplies.

More news: Moon sprouts: one small step for cotton, one giant step for China

First, it's a wolf moon, a traditional name for full moons in winter. China shared video of the Chang'e 4 landing on the moon this week. - China will seek to establish an global lunar base one day, possibly using 3D printing technology to build facilities, the Chinese space agency said on January 14, weeks after landing the rover on the moon's far side.

Now, the China National Space Administration and its probe have completed another first.

Earlier this month, China became the first country in the world to successfully land a lunar probe, Chang'e-4, on the far side of the Moon. While on Earth, we've become accustomed to the benefits provided by our planet's natural biosphere - things like humidity, sunlight levels, water levels, etc. work in ways that are hard to reproduce in a completely controlled environment like a spacecraft.

We could probably make some nice sweaters from moon-grown cotton.

Alongside them in a seven-inch bucket in the lander's cargo are rapeseed, potato and arabidopsis seeds, as well as yeast, fruit fly eggs, air and water.

The seeds sent aboard the Chinese lander each have specific roles to play in a future colony: potatoes are calorie-dense and a resilient food source, cotton could help produce clothing, and the rapeseed plants could be a source of oil.



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