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posted by cmn32480 on Thursday June 15 2017, @05:14AM   Printer-friendly
from the lunar-tater-tots dept.

China plans to send a 3 kg miniature ecosystem biosphere to the surface of the moon by using Chang'e 4 mission, incorporating a robotic lander and rover. When it departs in 2018.

The container will send potatoes, arabidopsis seeds and silkworm eggs to the surface of the moon. The eggs will hatch into silkworms, which can produce carbon dioxide, while the potatoes and seeds emit oxygen through photosynthesis. Together, they can establish a simple ecosystem on the Moon, says Zhang Yuanxun, chief designer of the container.

[...] Suitable temperature for plants and insects to survive and thrive is between +1 .. +30 ⁰C. But the moon's surface temperature ranges between -170 ⁰C at night to +120 ⁰C in the day. To get around this problem, the container will be equipped with a[n] insulation layer and light pipes to ensure the growth of the plants and insects inside. Specially designed batteries will be used to provide a consistent energy supply.

[...] The whole event with the development of plants and insects on lunar surface will be live-streamed to the world, says the project's chief designer Xie [Gengxin].

Meanwhile researchers at the International potato center (CIP) and UTEC, Peru technical university in Lima, investigates if it's possible to grow potato on the planet Mars.

In the future all you base are owned by China?


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  • (Score: 2) by rondon on Thursday June 15 2017, @12:55PM (1 child)

    by rondon (5167) on Thursday June 15 2017, @12:55PM (#525979)

    I wish my country still had the drive to do things like this that will inspire young people to reach for the stars, but ultimately I am just glad that someone is stepping up to do space things like this!

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  • (Score: 2) by Grishnakh on Thursday June 15 2017, @03:19PM

    by Grishnakh (2831) on Thursday June 15 2017, @03:19PM (#526054)

    Exactly. Countries that can't get their shit together and do useful stuff in space should just step aside and let others who have the will do so, and get the recognition.