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#26 2004-10-12 11:54:58

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,337

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I know that we have been able to grow snow peas also but have no idea what else has been tried. The next crew is slated to do some more plant growth but article from http://www.spaceflightnow.com/station/e … eview.html does not really say what will be grown.

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#27 2004-11-03 15:27:00

Palomar
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From: USA
Registered: 2002-05-30
Posts: 9,734

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Shutdown

*Ray's not tired of potatoes, though; had a hamburger with a baked potato the same afternoon as his exit from Mars Base Zero.  I'm thinking "Wendy's."

:;):

Lots of good reading here.  Found the link to it at universetoday.com's web site.

--Cindy

P.S.:  Related link  "Can someone please donate a few trillion so we can colonize near space?"  smile


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#28 2004-11-04 03:29:12

Rxke
Member
From: Belgium
Registered: 2003-11-03
Posts: 3,658

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I don't recall the oxygen filtration system in Biosphere 2 working out so well. In fact, wasn't that the demise of the whole project? Whoever designed the thing didn't take into account aerobic bacteria in the soil and then ended up consuming nearly all of the oxygen before it could get to the people. Miscalculations in Biosphere meant pumping in LOX, then opening the doors.

I read the cause of the oxy depletion was because of themassive amounts of concrete used in the structure. They hadn't taken into account 'fresh' concrete assimilates and binds free oxy, so that was where it went.

In any case, this (oxy loss,) is no unsurmountable problem on Mars or either Luna, there are ways to 'harvest' plenty of oxy from regolith, nitrogen loss would be a bigger concern, or H on Luna.

I still have the feeling the failure of BiosphereII was mainly political, they have this *big* struture, what a waste to use it for tourism. They'd better keep testing it, tweaking out the errors in the system.


ExoMars' launcher's 2nd stage is probably en route to Mars. Unsterilised... yikes

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#29 2004-11-05 23:34:01

John Creighton
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From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2001-09-04
Posts: 2,401
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Re: Eat Like a Martian

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#30 2004-11-08 15:34:59

Earthfirst
Member
From: Phoenix Arizona
Registered: 2002-09-25
Posts: 343

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Solanum tuberosum are good at feeding large amounts of people when you have limited land to work with. For that matter all the stracy stables are great, Manioc Esculenta, Dioscorea spp, Ipomaea batatas, Colocasia Esculenta. These strachy stables provide a lot of food but many of them are lacking in vietmens. But Dioscorea spp does have vietmen A.
Better solontion would be to add genes to your food crop that would make the lacking vietmens. Example Golden rice genes from daffadills were add to rice that make the recursor of vietmen A. Also their are all ready nutriently advanded crops right now that people dont eat, like Tritcales Rye X Bread wheat. Tricales make great bread but have the extra protiens and vietmens that ryes have. But Tricales are mostly grown for animal feed.
Gm plants coupled with growth system that uses all the plant parts would work well to feed people, a cycle. For example Strachy stables and grains are grown in a field that get irragated from a fish pond. Fish eat the plant part people cant like stems and leave, fish return wastes to plants though irragation. People return waste to plants with rice swamp that fliters water.
Closed system, all mater is conserved and recycled though the systems animals. That means peoples waste most be returned too. Just in real life, That poo will become a sandwich then back to poo, ant life wonderful, the co2 you breath out at one time was part of an organic molcule of another animal or plant. So dont bashful of the mess you leave, embrace it because some day it will become a butter fky, or another person. :;):


I love plants!

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#31 2004-11-08 18:43:41

Grypd
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From: Scotland, Europe
Registered: 2004-06-07
Posts: 1,859

Re: Eat Like a Martian

We cannot have a life support mechanism and food supply situation that relies on a single produce. It would prove to be too easy for a change in circumstances, accidental release of infection etc to wipe out a good amount of food needed. We will have to try to grow a very diverse supply of food if only to keep people interested in diet and to keep morale up.

Yes food does have a lot to do with morale, good food people tend to be happier, same old kind of deflates peoples hopes.

We will not mange to make a fully closed cycle of a life support system it will need injections of materials all the time. But there are ways to do this without apparently doing so. If we have tourists going to your base they would be fead meals before they left that would when nature takes its course be easily put through the system and turned into useful materials. Visitors clothes would go up in packing cases that are easily destroyed and the carbon and nitrogen removed. When they leave they get a nice set of luxury lunar etc aluminium packing cases. The same with all materials that are sent up. We make them enviromentally easily biodegradable into useful products. This should help the life system along.


Chan eil mi aig a bheil ùidh ann an gleidheadh an status quo; Tha mi airson cur às e.

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#32 2004-11-09 11:28:34

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,337

Re: Eat Like a Martian

A lot of the same problem we are experiencing aboard the ISS. What goes up should never come down and that includes the cargo ship even if it is a russian progress. Canabalize it for what can be safety reusued before sending it on its way. I would even go as far as melting it down if possible for reuse.
On the senerio of food all food types are need and genetics probably should not be introduced for a while at least.

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#33 2005-07-17 17:56:58

Mace
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From: California, USA
Registered: 2005-07-17
Posts: 38

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Why not feed everybody off a single type of protein-rich fungus? Fungus is easy to grow and (perhaps with vitamins added) could supply a whole colony with food. As for taste, with the right flavor addatives we can make anything taste like anything:chicken fungus, beef fungus, carrot fungus. To protect this fungus from dangers (infections, accidents), it should be grow completely automated and in many different vats throughout the colony.

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#34 2005-07-17 19:14:55

Rxke
Member
From: Belgium
Registered: 2003-11-03
Posts: 3,658

Re: Eat Like a Martian

As Grypd pointed out: too dangerous re: monocultural diseases etc...

And besides, as long as there are not large amounts of people living off the stuff on Earth, I'd vote againt it: experimental food-source on a hostile world might not be the best idea in the initial phase


ExoMars' launcher's 2nd stage is probably en route to Mars. Unsterilised... yikes

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#35 2005-07-17 19:34:26

Mace
Member
From: California, USA
Registered: 2005-07-17
Posts: 38

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Monocultural disease? Thus the use of automated systems with no human or outside contact and the use of many isolated growing vats. Also, all inventions at some point were experimental. If research is started now, by the time colonies form, it could be relatively safe and perfected.

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#36 2005-07-22 16:27:58

srmeaney
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From: 18 tiwi gdns rd, TIWI NT 0810
Registered: 2005-03-18
Posts: 976

Re: Eat Like a Martian

A lot of the same problem we are experiencing aboard the ISS. What goes up should never come down and that includes the cargo ship even if it is a russian progress. Canabalize it for what can be safety reusued before sending it on its way. I would even go as far as melting it down if possible for reuse.
On the senerio of food all food types are need and genetics probably should not be introduced for a while at least.

Depends what it is used for. Sure you can use the fuel tanks for water storage, shred the metals for soil content, spray shredded alluminium on the wall for the fungus to grip to...

Fungus and Fish,
Orchids and Bees.

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#37 2007-05-31 12:04:43

Yang Liwei Rocket
Member
Registered: 2004-03-03
Posts: 993

Re: Eat Like a Martian

A lot of space groups have been looking into this stuff and NASA food nutritionists study this area with great hope. If people are to live in space for longer periods, self-sustaining food production will become be vital, its also not as easy as just growing something on Earth soil in a sealed enviornment  quantities of other gases build up while on Earth you'd never think about, look how Biosphere II's failure shows these kinds of problems.


'first steps are not for cheap, think about it...
did China build a great Wall in a day ?' ( Y L R newmars forum member )

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#38 2008-03-28 20:52:35

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,652

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Good crops (hydroponic) to go for at an early stage:

Salad vegetables like lettuce, tomatoes and watercress.

Bean sprouts

Soya beans

Buckwheat

Rice?

Oil bearing plant (not identified yet but rapeseed perhaps).

Bamboo - as  a material for various uses e.g. containers and so on.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#39 2008-04-06 14:10:14

Terraformer
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From: Lancashire
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,227
Website

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Chlorella?


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#40 2008-05-24 07:25:03

siggy
Member
From: Maastricht
Registered: 2008-05-24
Posts: 4

Re: Eat Like a Martian

For food production you can have a big variety as long as the plantrequirements are more or less the same. Light/shade, temperature, water, soil nutrients. You can grow in plant container, but that would increase complexity unnecessaraly.

Potatoes are a good choice, as well as carrots and tomatoes. Also, select the food on how easy it is to grow. If you're gonna use labourtime intensive plants, greater risk of crop reduction.

For oil production, this may be something:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camelina_sativa

For the production of oxygen, apart from the vegetables in the greenhouses, algea in a stacked cabinet can be used. Perhaps, although probably controversial, industrial hemp can be used. It grows in 100 days, grows in Dutch climate and above all, it can be used for fibre production and the leafs and seeds are protein rich and can be used as food. And no, this is not the one with the THC. Since it grows like a weed, it could maybe be used to create usable soil for the vegetables by adding Mars regolith to the soil that is used to grow all the vegetables.

As for food keeping up morale, much of the taste in my food imho, comes from herbs and spices, not so much from the food itself. Herbs are easy to grow anyway, so bring along enough herb seeds to get not so much food diversity but diversity in taste. That's whats eating all about, the taste.

And for extra lighting needed during dust storms, led-lights are the way to go. You can focus them on the leaves withouth burning them, and energy-effeciient are off course the major advantages.

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#41 2008-05-24 13:26:13

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,652

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I've said before that I can't see much point in having a natural greenhouse on the surface. For one thing it will be vulnerable to a meteorite storm - which could destroy your whole food growing system. For another it makes the crops vulnerable to radiation damage. Finally you have to have a reserve lighting system to cope with dust storms. Since you have to have the reserve system (which will in any case get in the way of the natural sunlight unless you make an even more complex system), you might as well use it all the time since the electrical input will NOT be a problem.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#42 2008-05-27 22:23:07

Commodore
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From: Upstate NY, USA
Registered: 2004-07-25
Posts: 1,021

Re: Eat Like a Martian

And for extra lighting needed during dust storms, led-lights are the way to go. You can focus them on the leaves withouth burning them, and energy-effeciient are off course the major advantages.

I thought you had to use specialized lights giving off certain spectrum's. Can you really use LEDs?


"Yes, I was going to give this astronaut selection my best shot, I was determined when the NASA proctologist looked up my ass, he would see pipes so dazzling he would ask the nurse to get his sunglasses."
---Shuttle Astronaut Mike Mullane

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#43 2008-05-27 22:56:04

noosfractal
Member
From: Biosphere 1
Registered: 2005-10-04
Posts: 824
Website

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I thought you had to use specialized lights giving off certain spectrum's. Can you really use LEDs?

Actually they are quite efficient.  Chlorophyll only responds to these frequencies ...

absorption-spectrum.jpg

... so a two color LED array wastes very little power ...

led_v_fluor.jpg


Fan of Red Oasis

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#44 2008-05-28 08:06:40

Commodore
Member
From: Upstate NY, USA
Registered: 2004-07-25
Posts: 1,021

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Fantastic.

Why do Metal Halide and Sodium lamps still exist?


"Yes, I was going to give this astronaut selection my best shot, I was determined when the NASA proctologist looked up my ass, he would see pipes so dazzling he would ask the nurse to get his sunglasses."
---Shuttle Astronaut Mike Mullane

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#45 2008-05-28 13:40:56

noosfractal
Member
From: Biosphere 1
Registered: 2005-10-04
Posts: 824
Website

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Why do Metal Halide and Sodium lamps still exist?

High power LEDs (> 1W) are currently more expensive (per lumen), and are a little bit picky about the quality of the power supply you give them - in some areas that means you'd also need a power conditioner.


Fan of Red Oasis

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#46 2015-11-26 18:56:14

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,337

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Fixed shifting issue on page 1 and other artifacts in the remaining pages.

Nice discussion on the amount of 80 square meters for a crew man to how it relates to a given crop. Also noted was the Biosphere experiment with regards to the same of 200 square meters. The second accounting for life support oxygen as well as food.

I think that before we can know what to plant and the amount in meters we need to have two more pieces of information. The first is growing cycle to harvest day count and a menu for what we need to supply from the garden in order for it to work for food. Since we can not bring it all with us to mars and back without be on dried foods which is up'ing the water needs.

Suggested_Crops_Space_Diet.PNG

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#47 2015-11-27 18:34:45

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,652

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Sorry SpaceNut but it's not clear what this table relates to.

I am guessing a balanced diet for one year but there is nothing to suggest that is what it relates to.

Square metres in terms of a Mars Colony is to my mind pretty irrelevant. With artificial light and soil tray or hydroponics, you can fit your 80 sq. metres into probably an area of 16 sq. metres on Mars. 

I know crops like dwarf buckwheat can mature in about 90 days.  In other words you can get FOUR crops a year in optimum conditions and of course underground, artificially lit agriculture provides optimum conditions of nutrition, water, no storms etc.


SpaceNut wrote:

Fixed shifting issue on page 1 and other artifacts in the remaining pages.

Nice discussion on the amount of 80 square meters for a crew man to how it relates to a given crop. Also noted was the Biosphere experiment with regards to the same of 200 square meters. The second accounting for life support oxygen as well as food.

I think that before we can know what to plant and the amount in meters we need to have two more pieces of information. The first is growing cycle to harvest day count and a menu for what we need to supply from the garden in order for it to work for food. Since we can not bring it all with us to mars and back without be on dried foods which is up'ing the water needs.

http://voitlab.com/courses/thermodynami … e_Diet.PNG


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#48 2015-11-27 22:47:03

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,337

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I do remember that you did like the dwarf buckwheat in past posts so lets look at the yield for a small 16 sq meter garden of only that crop to which if we had just that crop to eat for a 90 day period until the next how much do we have to eat each day.... The Wheat grain can be used to make flour for leavened, flat and steamed breads, biscuits, cookies, cakes, breakfast cereal, pasta, noodles, couscous and for fermentation to make beer, ect...The soft wheats are used for making flat bread, cakes, pastries, crackers, muffins, and biscuits.

http://nmsp.cals.cornell.edu/publicatio … heet51.pdf

A good yield for correctly grown and harvested buckwheat is 20 to 30 bushels per acre.

https://hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/afcm/buckwheat.html

Buckwheat yields in Wisconsin and Minnesota typically range from 500 to 2,000 pounds/acre.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwarf_wheat

How much does a bushel yield in flour....
http://www.traditionaloven.com/culinary … ogram.html

Amount: 1 bushel dry (bsh, bu) of buckwheat flour volume
Equals: 17.87 kilograms (kg - kilo) in buckwheat flour mass

The Acres to square meters area units conversion factor is 4046.85642.

4046/16=252 plots 30/252=0.12 bushels or 2.14kg of flour with a kilogram of flour is equal to 8 cups of flour for a full 90 day crop in the 16 sq meter plot

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#49 2019-09-23 19:01:15

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,337

Re: Eat Like a Martian

I was immediately reminded of this topic with this image
gardenerstable-5-jpg.jpg

2010-10-oct-nov-cabbage-salad-recipe-jpg.jpg

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#50 2019-09-24 04:12:41

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,652

Re: Eat Like a Martian

Dwarf buckwheat is a very good candidate. A quick growing season - 60 days I think, IIRC. A very versatile product - bread, pancakes and so on.

Palomar wrote:

*Yep.  :up:

I'm still surprised at this (in the original article I posted in the 1st of this thread):  "'We tried growing wheat, but we could have gotten several pounds of potatoes for an area that gave me just a cupful of wheat."

Maybe some sort of hybrid could be developed.  Can't imagine life anywhere without wheat and its byproducts.

--Cindy


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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