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#201 2017-06-22 19:27:26

doctordirt
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Registered: 2017-06-22
Posts: 7

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

To find the ingredients for hydroponics, they only need to harvest salts from a dry lakebed.

This would contain the nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, nickel, boron, molybdenum, etc., in fairly concentrated form

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#202 2017-06-22 20:19:56

SpaceNut
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

We are currently exploring such conditions but the reports are not indicating any large percentages of any of these....

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#203 2018-04-27 10:51:47

IanM
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Posts: 276

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

On one hand, I doubt that pests would be an issue for the first couple of missions given perfect inspection of the cargo, but as the colony matures it would be almost inevitable that a lucky pest would creep on board. The boll weevil, particularly impacting cotton for when we want to make textiles, was essentially eradicated in the US by a targeted program from the 1970s to 2009 (except for a small area of Texas) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boll_Weev … on_Program, but Mars might not have the resources, though at the same time Mars also wouldn't have the vast area of cropland the US has. As for insecticides, they seem to do okay for American agriculture without Americans dropping dead, so perhaps quite a bit can be imported/manufactured.


The Earth is the cradle of the mind, but one cannot live in a cradle forever. -Paraphrased from Tsiolkovsky

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#204 2018-04-27 16:35:24

louis
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From: UK
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Posts: 5,872

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

I presume plants are like humans and can incubate diseases within their structure which can then manifest themselves and pass to other individuals.  That is likely to be the greatest danger on Mars although probably controlled propagation of plants may reduce the risk.

It is probably best for there to be geographically separated farm habs. If a problem arises in one, you could simply depressurise and killed off all organisms within the hab.



IanM wrote:

On one hand, I doubt that pests would be an issue for the first couple of missions given perfect inspection of the cargo, but as the colony matures it would be almost inevitable that a lucky pest would creep on board. The boll weevil, particularly impacting cotton for when we want to make textiles, was essentially eradicated in the US by a targeted program from the 1970s to 2009 (except for a small area of Texas) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boll_Weev … on_Program, but Mars might not have the resources, though at the same time Mars also wouldn't have the vast area of cropland the US has. As for insecticides, they seem to do okay for American agriculture without Americans dropping dead, so perhaps quite a bit can be imported/manufactured.


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

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#205 2018-04-28 03:39:01

elderflower
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Registered: 2016-06-19
Posts: 1,261

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

I would like to point out that hundreds of thousands of Americans die every day. A few from high velocity lead poisoning and some from RTAs and other accidents. The majority , I suppose, from old age or diseases or complications of pregnancy. Hidden in this mass of deaths may be some chemical influences not necessarily directly causing the death but contributing in some way. A chemical substance or combination might, for instance,  have affected the mental ability of the deceased to predict and avoid, or react to the circumstances leading to death. Just maybe it might affect the stability of the guy with his finger on the trigger or his foot on the accelerator. Keep an open mind, follow the research and beware chemical companies and agents putting out dubious information.

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#206 2018-04-28 10:46:08

SpaceNut
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Everything taken in a large enough quantity is poisonous, just like causes for cancer for said same....As we do get older we do not eat the way we should be; as the funds for being able to eat better just are not there. Most American do not grow even a simple flower within there own yard let along something that they could eat.

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#207 2018-04-28 11:24:22

RobertDyck
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Only seeds will be transported to Mars. It's not hard to ensure seeds are clean. Potatoes do produce seeds, but what I read says those seeds produce unpredictable characteristics. Storage and planting...

Harvest potatoes that you wish to use next year as seed potatoes and brush off, don’t wash, any dirt. Place them in a cool, dry area of around 50°F (10°C). Three to four weeks prior to planting, put the potatoes in an area with brighter light, such as a sunny window or beneath grow lights. The seed potatoes should be maintained at a high humidity during this period. Covering with moist burlap bags will aid in initiating sprouting as well.

Small potato seed can be planted whole, but large spuds must be cut. Each seed piece should contain at least two or three eyes and weigh around 2 ounces. Plant in rich, well draining soil with an all purpose fertilizer worked into the top 6 inches. Most people plant seed potatoes in hills and it is a good idea to apply a thick layer of organic mulch (grass clipping, straw, or newspaper) around the plants. Hills should be 10-12 inches apart in rows 30-36 inches apart. Irrigate the hill well each week — about 1-2 inches of water at the base of the plant.

This means you must be extra diligent to ensure seed potatoes are clean before transport to Mars. But that's not hard.

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#208 2018-05-03 14:42:53

louis
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From: UK
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Posts: 5,872

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Interesting video about a researcher who's been doing some hands-on work on growing plants in Mars-analogue soils.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F48kjtsptfo

Last edited by louis (2018-05-03 14:43:17)


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

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#209 2019-02-17 20:54:29

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,600

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Time for an update to this topic ...

Having scanned a number of posts at the beginning of the topic, I understand the bias toward using soil.  This post reports on large scale aquaponics activities in the US ... The organization at the focus of the article is making money but not yet at break even in the competitive environment of the US.  However, if this operation were transported to Mars, it might very well be competitive with soil based operations.

The counter argument I anticipate is that if the investment needed to create the described operation on Mars were instead expended on a soil based solution, then that operation might be competitive as well.

Another objection I noticed in earlier posts was dependence upon a steady supply of power, but since I am a supporter of fission based power, it is natural for me to anticipate primary power from fission, and lots of solar power for times when its available.

(th)

https://www.outsideonline.com/2389106/u … s-fix-food

While Haberman has moved on from Urban Organics, when I spoke with him again in January 2019, he remained emphatic that aquaponics is a key component of the future of food. That vision might seem improbable to the tractor and-plow folks still muscling crops from sprawling 500-acre farms, vulnerable to the whims of weather and the price of diesel. But like any revolution, perspective is often generational. “We have a nine-year-old daughter,” says Kristen. “When she was younger, if you asked her to draw a farm, she drew a brick building with fish and plants inside.”

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#210 2019-02-17 21:15:33

SpaceNut
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Mars does not have a climate within a dome or chamber enclosure so depending on the mass of the equipment to make the system possible for use.

A dome would be clear to the sun with solar UV filtering film. The mass to make a large one would be impractical to haul from earth so its more equipment to do insitu fabrication of the dome hauled instead. So since we need to make it we probably have hit a mass transport limit for bring it to mars which would mean dirt growing initially with later upgrading to hydroponic.

The energy to keep the internal temperature within the zone for food grow is important and where it comes from is also part of the mass limitation to solve for.

Keep in mind we are only capable at this time of 2 metric tones of payload to the surface not including the struture that it resides in.

Nasa and others are working on improving that mass by a number of landing approaches and so is the space x BFR...

So underground chamber approach is mass to dig, seal the chamber from leaking atmospheric, power system and we are still back to the same limitation of mass delivery making soil grown probable at first with hydroponics later.

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#211 2019-02-19 08:20:36

elderflower
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Registered: 2016-06-19
Posts: 1,261

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

How much would a one way trip on Falcon Heavy deliver to Mars' surface? My recollection is that it would be a lot more than two tonnes. I'm sure GW will have a well founded number for this.

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#212 2019-02-19 08:48:58

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 6,174
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

SpaceX website says Falcon Heavy can deliver 16,800kg to a trans-Mars trajectory. Realize that's if no stages are recovered. Then much of that mass will be used for cruise stage and Entry-Descent-Landing (EDL). The following chart is for ADEPT, it show 40t payload requires 78t entry mass. You can factor for FH throw mass but how much for cruise?

ADEPTsequence.jpg

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#213 2019-02-19 18:00:43

louis
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From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,872

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

If you've ever kept fish indoors, you will know that the issue of fresh water is hugely important.

I instinctively distrust the idea of raising fish in a vulnerable indoor pressurised environment. You would need huge amounts of fresh water.  There would be large labour input required in my view to monitor all the operations.

If you want to add the problems of putting fission power into human and fish environments, well that's your look-out.

Fish farming on Earth normally takes place where there are copious amounts of fresh water freely available (large rivers or coastal seas). We simply won't have those sorts of environments available on Mars.

I think we should focus on a vegetarian diet with production of meat analogs (like the Impossible Burger). Once the colony is established we can look to producing "lab meat" products, which could encompass fish. 



tahanson43206 wrote:

Time for an update to this topic ...

Having scanned a number of posts at the beginning of the topic, I understand the bias toward using soil.  This post reports on large scale aquaponics activities in the US ... The organization at the focus of the article is making money but not yet at break even in the competitive environment of the US.  However, if this operation were transported to Mars, it might very well be competitive with soil based operations.

The counter argument I anticipate is that if the investment needed to create the described operation on Mars were instead expended on a soil based solution, then that operation might be competitive as well.

Another objection I noticed in earlier posts was dependence upon a steady supply of power, but since I am a supporter of fission based power, it is natural for me to anticipate primary power from fission, and lots of solar power for times when its available.

(th)

https://www.outsideonline.com/2389106/u … s-fix-food

While Haberman has moved on from Urban Organics, when I spoke with him again in January 2019, he remained emphatic that aquaponics is a key component of the future of food. That vision might seem improbable to the tractor and-plow folks still muscling crops from sprawling 500-acre farms, vulnerable to the whims of weather and the price of diesel. But like any revolution, perspective is often generational. “We have a nine-year-old daughter,” says Kristen. “When she was younger, if you asked her to draw a farm, she drew a brick building with fish and plants inside.”


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

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#214 2019-02-19 19:17:01

SpaceNut
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Posts: 19,729

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

The GW post of mass was with the calculations for the jpl sample mission and red dragon as well as a modified dragon. The mass of the ship as customary is not part of payload even though its landed.

The vegitarian diet can not be long term as it not healthy for humans overall and its why we eat so many different items....

Another way to build for what we want

Pyramid Greenhouse

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#215 2019-03-26 13:16:35

tahanson43206
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Posts: 3,600

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

For SpaceNut ...

SearchTerm:Epcot

This post is intended to report on a friend's visit to Epcot in Florida.

I searched for Epcot in NewMars, and found only references to Mission to Space.

This post is about the work being done at Epcot to test various greenhouse methods.

I'll add text later.  This edit is to supply images, using imgur.com as suggested by JoshN4NH (somewhere in the forum)

I may have mixed up the text that goes with the images, and will ask Ron to check my work.

From email by Ron:

We all enjoyed the “Back to the Seeds” walking tour.   It felt a bit like being in Biosphere 2 (which we visited the last time we were in Arizona).  Almost the whole walk was devoted to growing food for the restaurants at Disney.  Naturally this would also be applicable to sustaining any extraterrestrial human life.

The last image shows vertical planters whose roots dangle in a trough in the floor of the greenhouse.  The planters are suspended above and carried around through a trough in the floor.  The plants in the background are vertical tomato and pepper trees.  (These are made by removing the apical (topmost) buds, allowing the plants to bush out for easy picking.)  These plants have become perennial all by themselves.  Behind these vegetable trees, is the boat ride through the land.

KeKHa6G.jpg
Label corrected by Ron 2019/04/01:

This image is from “Living with the Land”
greenhouse at EPCOT in
Florida.

The camera was located on the walking trail.

In the foreground is one of a series of vertical hydroponic gardens being rotated though a nutrient bath.

In the background is one of boats used to carry folks on the boat ride through the greenhouse.

The third image is of disease test grow boxes.  Unfortunately the lighting confused the focus on my cell phone.  (Plants use only the red and blue parts of the sun’s white light, about 45%).  I’m sure such a system would be necessary in any extraterrestrial greenhouse, especially if native life forms are eventually discovered, especially on Mars.

Mi8z5EO.jpg
Testing for Pathogens
Edit by Ron 2019/04/01

An image of a test cell in the EPCOT green house

along the walking path.  Many of these experiments
are managed by the government and/or private companies.

greenhouse’s  oldest inhabitant (17 years).  The next oldest is a tree almost touching the top of the dome.  It is scheduled for removal next year because it is too tall;  the second is  of my favorite system, rotating grow spirals.  The roots are fed a nutrient solution from a pipe at the top of the spiral and drain through the conical receiver at the bottom, recycled through the aquaculture fish tanks to be reused again.  This saves thousands of gallons of water/year, certainly necessary in a Mars settlement.

vvr33Qj.jpg
Edited by Ron 2019/04/01:

The foreground shows a hydroponic plant starter system embedded in a
nutrient filled trough.  The midground shows several rotating vertical
hydroponic gardens.  I believe the background shows several containers
of tomato “trees”.

Not shown is the petting plant.  “Stanley” is a sensitive bush (Genus Mimosa) whose leaves shrivel when touched.  Since folks are not supposed to touch anything in the greenhouse,  this is supposed to discourage folks, especially kids, from touching anything else.  Researchers use blue plastic covers over their shoes before they walk on the greenhouse sandy soil.
All of the lettuce used in all of the Disney restaurants is grown on a flat, thin tank about 20’ square using the nutrient film technique.
Also not shown are the large fish tanks used to recycle water used by the greenhouse.

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2019-04-01 11:47:26)

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#216 2019-03-26 17:24:02

SpaceNut
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

What you have shown is not only the types of plantings but also how we can use the vertical height to our advantages within crop types.

I can see the first of the food growth still being inside the various cargo landers using any open spaces to get a leg up until we can build.

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#217 2019-03-29 04:37:53

elderflower
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Registered: 2016-06-19
Posts: 1,261

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

There are plenty of fishes that could be used such as Carp or Basa.. Carp are vegetarian which would be good, at least initially. Other edible cold blooded creatures include prawns and shrimps, snails, some insects and their larvae, iguanas, turtles. Cold blooded animals are much more efficient in energy consumption per unit mass than are warm blooded ones, so probably no chickens, guinea pigs or rabbits in the early days. If we need milk we will use soybeans for a long time before we get goats!

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#218 2019-03-29 09:29:42

Terraformer
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From: Lancashire
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grass_carp

A possible option for low pressure greenhouse aquaculture.


"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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#219 2019-03-29 19:10:43

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

https://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi … 017185.pdf
GREENHOUSE DESIGN FOR A MARTIAN COLONY

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#220 2019-04-07 19:23:33

SpaceNut
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Making food growth possible with insitu manufactured PVC...

https://www.hunker.com/12271617/ingredi … ufacturing

This thermoplastic material is used in a myriad of products including water pipe and electrical conduit in a number of colors, are tolerant to ultraviolet light, and have various degrees of flexibility.

https://www.hunker.com/13401573/pvc-pip … ng-process

PVC pipes are created by starting with a molten mixture of the material and shaping them around a cast. The casts are made to be the exact width of the pipe. The mixture is poured into a cast and surrounded by an outer shell. The complete set is then placed into an oven to be cooked. Once the pipe has solidified, it is cooled and moved into finishing.

Now what to do and how to make hydroponic work...

How To Build A Homemade DIY Hydroponics System Setup Using PVC Pipes Complete Guide A hydroponic gardening system with PVC pipe can be built using the basic tools that are often found within a household.

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#221 2019-04-08 06:51:09

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,600

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

For SpaceNut ...

Another impressive find!

(th)

SpaceNut wrote:

Making food growth possible with insitu manufactured PVC...

Now what to do and how to make hydroponic work...

How To Build A Homemade DIY Hydroponics System Setup Using PVC Pipes Complete Guide A hydroponic gardening system with PVC pipe can be built using the basic tools that are often found within a household.

In my first scan of this link, the text came up but no pictures.  I'm guessing it is just a case of Internet lookup delay at first open.

A feature I liked was the "Price Check" links, which turned out to go to Amazon, in a compact format I've not seen before.

(th)

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#222 2019-04-08 18:16:06

SpaceNut
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Posts: 19,729

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

As meantioned I think it would be possible to create from pvc materials many of the items that we will need on mars from insitu reources via a 3 D style printing design. Such things as tanks to store water, air and even co2 at use pressures would be important to begin making mans place on mars sustainable.

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#223 2019-07-07 10:09:27

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Posts: 19,729

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Not sure how many of GW's catus implements we will need on mars but there could be a number of different items not on early mars that we will need to aid in plowing the fields.
Keeping fit could be as easy as making things that are human powered if we do not have the equipment needed from earth yet.
culticycle-tractor.JPG.860x0_q70_crop-scale.jpg

Sure Gilligan's Island for somethings as we will not get everything we need even with good planning.

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#224 2019-08-09 20:22:50

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Plant roots began following gravity 350 million years ago

So why so long since plants have been around alot longer than that....

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#225 2019-08-11 19:10:14

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,600

Re: Greenhouse - hydroponics vs soil

Here is an update on work being done to develop hydroponic farming ...

In Post #1 of this topic, RobertDyck argued that that soil Martian regolith would have advantages over hydroponic agriculture on Mars.

The intention of this post is to show that progress in developing a business case for hydroponic agriculture has been made for the On Earth case.

My expectation is that further progress is likely for the Earth case, and some of the work may have an influence on planning for space applications.

The article does not provide any information about chemicals used, so I'm assuming that this venture is using "traditional" chemicals.

Progress appears to have been made in the use of robotics to amplify the productivity of human labor, and there may have been other technical improvements.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/business … story.html

(th)

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