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#101 2014-02-01 17:59:14

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

The has been a number of crop experiments on the ISS and they show that food can be grown any where when protected.

Russian Space Farmers Harvest Wheat, Peas and Greens

Not quite the way will grow on mars but still food.

russia-space-farmers-greens-iss-lg.jpg

Russian Space Farmers Harvest Wheat, Peas and Greens are a variety of crops that have been successfully harvested on board the International Space Station and verified as safe to eat which will be also a first step for any grown on mars as well. Next year Russian cosmonauts will sow rice, tomatoes and bell peppers after repairing the station's Lada greenhouse. We know that Long-duration deep space missions without agriculture would require many months' or years' worth of food, greatly adding to their launch weight.

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#102 2014-02-01 19:35:55

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,208

Re: Crops

Terraformer wrote:

Ooh eck, so sweet potato has about 2300 calories per kilogram, and yields up to 80 tonnes per hectare have been reported...? That's 18.4 thousand calories per square meter. That means you could support an adult, calorie wise, on 40 square meters of land.

But I've heard yields for potatoes grown non-commercially of over 125kg/m^2, which is 87.5k calories/m^2. It only just reaches into the realm of possibility at that point. But perhaps we can get 50kg/m^2 (on Terra). If I had a garden, I'd experiment, to try and find out what the optimum conditions are and how to automate them.

So 7 days' feed for an adult male from one square metre! Pretty amazing.  2 years' worth of feed from 100 square metre for one man.  Or 100 men from one hectare.


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

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#103 2014-02-01 19:40:31

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

Dutch researcher says Earth food plants able to grow on Mars

Researchers investigated whether it is possible to grow different types of plants in the soil of Mars and on the moon. They did an experiment with 14 plant species on artificial Martian and lunar soil, provided by NASA. The experiment lasted 50 days.

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#104 2014-02-04 21:09:45

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

While we will need to understand the period of time it takes to germinate, the approximate yield to the foot print used and length to a full grown plant we do need to understand that with regards to harvesting the food will only last just so long. We will also need to have a good data base of once harvested edibility unrefrigerated, refridgerated, frozen and canned as its about energ used and not just how much food has been grown.

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#105 2014-03-22 20:08:24

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

Anyone going to mars will need to plant food where ever it will grow. Even here on earth that is shown to be the case within the densest of city areas. http://www.truckfarm.org

kids.jpg

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#106 2014-03-23 20:00:49

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,208

Re: Crops

Nice pic Spacenut!

I think my big recommendations for food on Mars would be:

Dwarf buckwheat - a v. useful crop within 60 days (you can make pancakes, bread and all the rest with it)

Beansprouts - superquick...just a few days to produce your crop and v. nutritious as well. Minimal maintenance.

Guinea pigs...when it comes to rearing meat, we'll want something that is manageable, low maintenance but versatile in terms of cooking.  Guinea pigs grown for meat fit the bill.


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

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#107 2014-03-23 20:43:11

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

Growing of food will initially be to supplement what a crew does not bring but will need to change to one that is nutrious and meets diet needs. That said a menu is one of the key elements to help with the planning of what crops to grow and to make dietary happen.

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#108 2014-03-23 21:23:50

Excelsior
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From: Excelsior, USA
Registered: 2014-02-22
Posts: 120

Re: Crops

The objective of any first interplanetary expedition should be the successful operation of a life sustaining microponic ecosystem for the duration of the mission.

In fact if Dennis Tito wants to make Inspiration Mars successful, and actually inspirational, he needs to realize that it is about creating an Earth like environment in deep space, and not about drive-byes of a couple of planets. He should prep his vessel, it's crew of biologists and veterinarians, and the ecosystem it contains as a space station in low earth orbit prior, only launching his propulsion modules just prior to his departure window. He can store a missions worth of freeze dried rations, but success is measured by how little of it the crew needs to use. Bonus points if they sustain a hit from a solar flare, nuking their gardens, but they are able to restore it from what they can preserve in the rad bunker by the end of the mission.


The Former Commodore

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#109 2014-03-30 09:44:04

martienne
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From: EU
Registered: 2014-03-29
Posts: 146

Re: Crops

RobertDyck wrote:

Quinoa - high protein grain

My sister suggested we grow quinoa on Mars. She's into self-sufficiency, and has a bag of this grain. It's big advantage is amino acids are balanced.

I think she's on the right track from an energy preserving and nutritional perspective.

A high protein vegetarian/vegan diet requires less effort, energy to produce, and can fully meet any human being's nutritional requirements. Plus, it the best dieet to keep them healthy - there are many vegetables that actively fight certain common illnesses and conditions.

Who'd want to be struck by diabetes, cancer or arthiritis on Mars? A balanced vegan diet prevents that. 

IMHO anyone who can't live without steaks or pizza should probably not go to Mars, at least not in the first phases! I think it's almost shocking to read about people who expect to eat beef and chicken. The body requires neither, most of the world's population never or very rarely eat it, and it's incredibly inefficient use of space and energy as a food source.

I'd love to find out more about how to grow crops on Mars, so I'll check out that site about self-sufficient living on Mars.

For example - could a fully functioning greenhouse be constructed based on material available on Mars, assuming the required tools were available.... ? Or would it be necessary to bring the parts, and the material?
Ultimately the goal must be self sufficiency, mustn't it?

And for that, people's expectation on what is needed for a good life must change. Mars just don't have the resources to sustain the couch potato, high-consumer, meat eating culture we have in Europe and America.

Last edited by martienne (2014-03-30 10:57:15)

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#110 2014-03-30 13:12:15

GW Johnson
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From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 5,537
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Re: Crops

Evolutionarily,  humans are omnivores,  not vegetarians only.  Especially when times and circumstances are stressful,  animal protein and fat is actually quite beneficial.  That's why we seem to be "hard-wired" to like the stuff.  We thrived better that way under stone age conditions. 

I think you can get away with any sort of balanced diet.  But sooner or later,  the desire for variety will kick-in.  That's what evolution hard-wired into us.  And that may,  or may not,  be appropriate for conditions of living on Mars.  But,  either way,  it is a factor that must be faced and dealt with. 

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#111 2014-03-30 14:57:37

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,208

Re: Crops

martienne wrote:
RobertDyck wrote:

Quinoa - high protein grain

My sister suggested we grow quinoa on Mars. She's into self-sufficiency, and has a bag of this grain. It's big advantage is amino acids are balanced.

I think she's on the right track from an energy preserving and nutritional perspective.

A high protein vegetarian/vegan diet requires less effort, energy to produce, and can fully meet any human being's nutritional requirements. Plus, it the best dieet to keep them healthy - there are many vegetables that actively fight certain common illnesses and conditions.

Who'd want to be struck by diabetes, cancer or arthiritis on Mars? A balanced vegan diet prevents that. 

IMHO anyone who can't live without steaks or pizza should probably not go to Mars, at least not in the first phases! I think it's almost shocking to read about people who expect to eat beef and chicken. The body requires neither, most of the world's population never or very rarely eat it, and it's incredibly inefficient use of space and energy as a food source.

I'd love to find out more about how to grow crops on Mars, so I'll check out that site about self-sufficient living on Mars.

For example - could a fully functioning greenhouse be constructed based on material available on Mars, assuming the required tools were available.... ? Or would it be necessary to bring the parts, and the material?
Ultimately the goal must be self sufficiency, mustn't it?

And for that, people's expectation on what is needed for a good life must change. Mars just don't have the resources to sustain the couch potato, high-consumer, meat eating culture we have in Europe and America.

A functioning, pressurised "greenhouse" can be built underground, with lighting being artificial - provided by imported PV panels or we could build solar reflectors and steam boilers on Mars with fairly simple materials, which could generate electricity.

We may be able to construct low pressure high CO2 greenhouse using Mars produced glass and steel frames fairly early on. I think they will need supplementary heating.

I agree Mars will have a "minimal meat" cuisine culture, although of course the meat eaters will no doubt enjoy vacuum packed meals from Earth containing meat. Later guinea pigs will probably provide the first Mars meat.


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

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#112 2014-03-30 15:05:06

Terraformer
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From: Ceres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,826
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Re: Crops

Not Tilapi?

It doesn't seem that it would cost much to implement a Martian greenhouse simulation. It probably wouldn't even need an organisation to do it, just someone with a bit of disposable income and a big enough garden. See if they can manage to live on just the produce alone. Bonus points if all the tasks can be automated and super-yields gained.


Use what is abundant and build to last

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#113 2014-03-31 04:51:56

Glandu
Member
From: France
Registered: 2011-11-23
Posts: 106

Re: Crops

IIRC, vegans need B12 vitamin(cobalamin) supplements. That's also something to take in account. Either you are good enough in chemical terms to synthetize it, or you need some kind of animal food.


[i]"I promise not to exclude from consideration any idea based on its source, but to consider ideas across schools and heritages in order to find the ones that best suit the current situation."[/i] (Alistair Cockburn, Oath of Non-Allegiance)

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#114 2014-04-04 19:59:04

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

B12 occurs naturally in animal-derived foods Or you could just eat foods that have more B12 than others as part of a nutriutional diet...eat fortied foods that are brought or just bring the vitamins with you to take as needed.

http://www.livestrong.com/article/25392 … tamin-b12/

Very low B12 intakes can cause anaemia and nervous system damage.

http://www.vegansociety.com/lifestyle/n … n/b12.aspx

http://www.vegansociety.com/lifestyle/n … lists.aspx

Vitamin B2: 1.6 milligrams
Vitamin B6: 2 milligrams
Folic Acid: 200 micrograms
Vitamin B12: 10 micrograms
Vitamin D (as D2): 10 micrograms
Iodine: 150 micrograms
Selenium: 60 micrograms

Full ingredients list:

Sugar, Dextrose, Acacia, Selenomethionine (Selenium), Stearic Acid, Flavour (Blackcurrant), Ergocalciferol Preparation (D2), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (B6), Magnesium Stearate, Riboflavin (B2), PVP, Folacin (Folic Acid), Potassium Iodide (Iodine), Cyanocobalamin (B12)

http://www.vegansociety.com/lifestyle/food/?ad=677745

What do vegans eat?
Vegans enjoy all kinds of foods, such as curries, pizza, casseroles, burritos, chocolate cake, lasagne, soups, risottos, spicy bean chilli, stir fries, falafel, cupcakes, samosas, bhajis, pies, sausage and mash, stews, paella, dhal, toad in the hole, pasta and pesto, quiche, pancakes, tagines, tortilla wraps, chocolate chip cookies, jacket potatoes, cannelloni, pad thai, noodle soup, stuffed pasta shells, spicy potato wedges, fruit crumble and custard, gnocchi, tagliatelle, salads, shortbread, spring rolls, panini, spaghetti bolognese, sushi, mezze…

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#115 2014-04-04 20:54:11

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 7,835
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Re: Crops

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B1 … production

Neither plants nor animals are independently capable of constructing vitamin B12. Only bacteria and archaea have the enzymes required for its biosynthesis.
...
Ultimately, animals must obtain vitamin B12 directly or indirectly from bacteria, and these bacteria may inhabit a section of the gut which is distal to the section where B12 is absorbed. Thus, herbivorous animals must either obtain B12 from bacteria in their rumens, or (if fermenting plant material in the hindgut) by reingestion of cecotrope feces.
...
Industrial production of B12 is through fermentation of selected microorganisms. Streptomyces griseus, a bacterium once thought to be a yeast, was the commercial source of vitamin B12 for many years. The species Pseudomonas denitrificans and Propionibacterium shermanii are more commonly used today. These are frequently grown under special conditions to enhance yield, and at least one company ... used genetically engineered versions of one or both of these species.

UK Marmite
Vitamin B12: 0.6 µg per 4 g serving, 40% Recommended Daily Allowance

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#116 2014-04-05 06:18:55

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
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Re: Crops

I find it interesting how molecular structures are so similar. The same structures repeated again and again. Chlorophyl is the same as hemoglobin, just chlorophyl has a single atom of magnesium in the centre instead of iron, an chlorphyl has a hydrocarbon tail. That tail acts as an antenna, but the whole molecule is tuned. Chlorophyl A and Chlorophyl B are only different by one small group on the body of the molecule, not the antenna tail, 'A' has CH3 while 'B' has CHO. Vitamin B12 is very similar again, but has a single atom of cobalt in the centre instead of iron or magnesium. However, B12 is a bit deformed. Hemoglobin and chlorophyl have neat symetrical bodies, with 4 nitrogen atoms bonded to the central metal atom, and 4 hexagonal carbon rings with 3 of the carbon atoms replaced by the metal and two of the nitrogen atoms. So these hex rings share atoms. Between the hex rings, are penta rings, where 2 of the carbon atoms share an atom with the hex rings, and one carbon is again that same nitrogen. Vitamin B12 is the same, but one of the hex rings is only a penta ring, that's why I call it deformed. B12 has a hydrocarbon tail just like chlorophyl, and bonded at the same place, but the end of that tail has an amino acid, and that tail is folded in so the amino is bonded to the central metal (cobalt) atom. Interesting.

220px-Heme_b.svg.png chlphl.gif 200px-Cobalamin.png

Last edited by RobertDyck (2014-04-05 06:37:52)

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#117 2014-04-07 08:13:16

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 652

Re: Crops

A full vegan diet is not so healthy as many thinks

http://austriantimes.at/news/General_Ne … esearchers

but, on a Mars colony, may be very easy and cheep to couple greenhouses with aquaculture, farming herbivor fishs feeded with cereals wastes: giant gourami and catfish are very easy to grow and can be a very reliable sources of animal proteins. Later we can introduce "low cost" animals like chikens and after porks. So the colonist have meet and need only to import from Earth milk powder for children.
Only when colony has grown enough, milk cows for children can be imported.

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#118 2014-04-07 08:15:40

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 652

Re: Crops

RobertDyck wrote:

I find it interesting how molecular structures are so similar. The same structures repeated again and again. Chlorophyl is the same as hemoglobin, just chlorophyl has a single atom of magnesium in the centre instead of iron, an chlorphyl has a hydrocarbon tail. That tail acts as an antenna, but the whole molecule is tuned. Chlorophyl A and Chlorophyl B are only different by one small group on the body of the molecule, not the antenna tail, 'A' has CH3 while 'B' has CHO. Vitamin B12 is very similar again, but has a single atom of cobalt in the centre instead of iron or magnesium. However, B12 is a bit deformed. Hemoglobin and chlorophyl have neat symetrical bodies, with 4 nitrogen atoms bonded to the central metal atom, and 4 hexagonal carbon rings with 3 of the carbon atoms replaced by the metal and two of the nitrogen atoms. So these hex rings share atoms. Between the hex rings, are penta rings, where 2 of the carbon atoms share an atom with the hex rings, and one carbon is again that same nitrogen. Vitamin B12 is the same, but one of the hex rings is only a penta ring, that's why I call it deformed. B12 has a hydrocarbon tail just like chlorophyl, and bonded at the same place, but the end of that tail has an amino acid, and that tail is folded in so the amino is bonded to the central metal (cobalt) atom. Interesting.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c … _b.svg.png http://www2.estrellamountain.edu/facult … chlphl.gif http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/c … alamin.png

Evolution uses the same sinthesys path with some variation to build different molecoules for many purpose.

Last edited by Quaoar (2014-04-07 08:16:03)

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#119 2014-04-07 08:48:40

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 7,835
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Re: Crops

Aquaculture requires a lot of water. And some people here have argued to clean clothes without liquid CO2, as an extreme measure to conserve water. NASA's current water processing equipment on ISS is rated to recycle wash water, yet people think it's necessary to avoid water. Do you realize how much water that takes?

Talapia can tolerate much greater density, so far less water. This paper has numbers. The example on page 3 says

to grow 200 g animals in a year with 3 tanks, for every 100,000 lbs per year of production, you would need approximately 50,000 gallons of tankage.

And seeds are reasier to transport. Remember, 6 months in space, and at least some if not all of that in zero-G. I have argued that a far future, advanced Mars settlement could transport cattle using hybernation. You would transport young calves, just weened from milk. But it's so expensive to feed and house cattle on Mars, that it will be a very long time before that happens.

Besides, I already find "vegan Mars" attracts some people.

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#120 2014-04-07 12:44:04

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 652

Re: Crops

RobertDyck wrote:

Aquaculture requires a lot of water. And some people here have argued to clean clothes without liquid CO2, as an extreme measure to conserve water. NASA's current water processing equipment on ISS is rated to recycle wash water, yet people think it's necessary to avoid water. Do you realize how much water that takes?

Liquid CO2 washing was proposed for a first mission where is not known if there is water or not in the landing site. But a colony is supposed to be found on a reliable water source like a buried glacier: no water no colony. If we are talking about early missions were astronauts farm crops in enflatable greenhouse I agree with you that fishs are premature.
The trouble with only vegetarian diets is that vegetable proteins usually laks in some essential amminoacids, and to fix it is necessary to eat many kind of variety. So astronauts have to farm many kind of crops in a little greenhouse and this can be very difficoult. An alternative to have a balanced diet may be to add some dry food from Earth.
A cereal with a well balanced amminoacid composition is farro ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Farro ), that was anciently used to feed Roman soldiers: I never found it in US, but in Italy is still used as a base for very good soups and special breads.  It may be interesting for a Mars settlement.
It will be also possible to develop special GM crops for Mars, with high harvest gain (thiny stalk for a 0.38 g environment), low water need, balanced amminoacid and starch composition, radiation resistence and vitamin enriched, so animal proteins will be not necessary.

RobertDyck wrote:

And seeds are reasier to transport. Remember, 6 months in space, and at least some if not all of that in zero-G. I have argued that a far future, advanced Mars settlement could transport cattle using hybernation. You would transport young calves, just weened from milk. But it's so expensive to feed and house cattle on Mars, that it will be a very long time before that happens.

Besides, I already find "vegan Mars" attracts some people.

Animals will arrive only when the colony will be well developed and spaceships will be bigger, with artificial gravity and cosmic ray shielding (mini-magnetosphere or something like it). Only some female puppies and frozen male sperm to start. The bulk reproduction will be done in situ.

Last edited by Quaoar (2014-04-07 13:04:43)

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#121 2014-04-07 15:58:53

Terraformer
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From: Ceres
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 3,826
Website

Re: Crops

There will already be Shibe Inu on Luna by the time Mars is first colonised. To the moon!

Ahem. Mini cattle are about the size of large dogs. To take one - say, a young female - won't be all that hard I think, once the regular transports are set up. Once you have one, and a lot of sperm, you can get another female, then another, then another... eventually you could make bulls.


Use what is abundant and build to last

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#122 2014-04-07 17:15:43

GW Johnson
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From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 5,537
Website

Re: Crops

Real colonization needs bigger ships than we usually contemplate. 

We have known since the late 1950's how to build one version of such a thing:  nuclear pulse (explosion) propulsion.  Those ships are quite large (must be immense to have good Isp),  something like 10,000+ tons at launch. 

Think 20,000+ tons,  Isp 12,000+ sec,  vehicle acceleration 2 to 4 gees during burns.  Made out of 1 or 2 inch steel plate,  like a marine ship,  so there's a lot of shielding effect there.  Big enough to spin about any axis you want,  for artificial gravity.  With modern nuke device technologies,  performance should be even better,  and the nuke "side effects" less. 

In ships like that,  you can ship any crops and farm animals you could possibly imagine,  along with hundreds to thousands of colonists.  But,  NOBODY is working on this idea.  Not since 1965.

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#123 2014-04-07 18:18:42

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 7,208

Re: Crops

GW Johnson wrote:

Real colonization needs bigger ships than we usually contemplate. 

We have known since the late 1950's how to build one version of such a thing:  nuclear pulse (explosion) propulsion.  Those ships are quite large (must be immense to have good Isp),  something like 10,000+ tons at launch. 

Think 20,000+ tons,  Isp 12,000+ sec,  vehicle acceleration 2 to 4 gees during burns.  Made out of 1 or 2 inch steel plate,  like a marine ship,  so there's a lot of shielding effect there.  Big enough to spin about any axis you want,  for artificial gravity.  With modern nuke device technologies,  performance should be even better,  and the nuke "side effects" less. 

In ships like that,  you can ship any crops and farm animals you could possibly imagine,  along with hundreds to thousands of colonists.  But,  NOBODY is working on this idea.  Not since 1965.

GW

I don't agree with your take on that GW. I think after the initial colonisation phase - let's say the first ten missions, delivering maybe a total of 100-200 tonnes of material to Mars - the Mars community will be essentially self-sufficient, able to produce somewhere between 80-90% of foodstuffs and finished goods. The main requirement in terms of shipping stuff to Mars will be transferring human beings. I should add that in most respects the early Mars community will be a very frugal society - no luxury goods, no private vehicles, no expensive decor or fittings, no paper use, no alcohol production, very little food processing....


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

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#124 2014-04-07 21:02:52

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 29,178

Re: Crops

One of the local movements is for the schools to make use of local grown produce for lunches. Making local food a priority at UNH, one meal at a time

For individuals, it takes a little bit of work to eat locally. For an institution like UNH, which serves an average of 16,000 meals each day during the school year, using locally-grown and produced foods is a serious challenge.
About 23 percent of all the food dining services purchases is considered local—that is, it’s grown or produced within a 250 mile radius of campus. The university is also home to Food Solutions New England, a regional network “dedicated to advancing a sustainable New England food system.” Part of that vision: that the region can build the capacity to produce at least 50 percent of the food New Englanders need, in an environmentally and socially-sustainable way, by 2060. That produce is grown using compost created in part from food waste from the dining halls. As part of the composting system, food waste is washed off plates and trays into a trough. Water pushes the waste down the trough and into a drum, where the waste is ground up and liquid is extracted from it. The waste is then placed in large yellow buckets—each holding 75 pounds of food waste—and sent to Kingman Farm in Durham, where it’s used to make compost. That compost later returns to the university, where it’s used by students in the Food Experience course to help grow salad mix, tomatoes, zucchini and other vegetables that are served at the Dairy Bar and other university locations. Waste cooking oil is processed into biodiesel. Dining services has its own small electric car—like a golf cart, but enclosed—that Hill and Dining Services director John Plodzik use to visit the campus’ dining halls.

Looking at this as a mars building direction a small colony would need to distance the food from earth supply and in order to do that we would need a game plan as well as a timeline for how much resupply would taper off by following each successful mission to mars.

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#125 2014-04-08 06:05:04

Quaoar
Member
Registered: 2013-12-13
Posts: 652

Re: Crops

GW Johnson wrote:

Real colonization needs bigger ships than we usually contemplate. 

We have known since the late 1950's how to build one version of such a thing:  nuclear pulse (explosion) propulsion.  Those ships are quite large (must be immense to have good Isp),  something like 10,000+ tons at launch. 

Think 20,000+ tons,  Isp 12,000+ sec,  vehicle acceleration 2 to 4 gees during burns.  Made out of 1 or 2 inch steel plate,  like a marine ship,  so there's a lot of shielding effect there.  Big enough to spin about any axis you want,  for artificial gravity.  With modern nuke device technologies,  performance should be even better,  and the nuke "side effects" less. 

In ships like that,  you can ship any crops and farm animals you could possibly imagine,  along with hundreds to thousands of colonists.  But,  NOBODY is working on this idea.  Not since 1965.

GW

Sorry GW, but I've some doubt if Orion propulsion would really work as figured: can the tail plate survive many nuclear explosions without breaking or melting?
Will nuclear exolpsions be perfectly simmetrical, to accelerate the ship without putting her in an uncontrollable tumbling?
Will the ship mantain her attitude douring pulses, avoiding dangerous offset that will expose the habitat outside the shadow sield?

A gas core NTR will be more manageable.

Last edited by Quaoar (2014-04-08 06:06:59)

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