Research, Technology

In 2025, will humanity start growing plants on the moon?

In the next decade, humanity wantsfly to the moon, and then build a station on it for the periodic stay of people. Since any flight into space costs millions of dollars, scientists want to cut costs as much as possible - for example, by sending less cargo to the Earth's satellite. Already now they do not want to deliver water supplies to the Moon, hoping that researchers will be able to extract this valuable resource right on the spot. It would be great if people also had the opportunity to grow plants and eat "lunar" potatoes, carrots and so on. Recently there was news that scientists will try to grow plants on the moon as early as 2025. Who will do this and how will it happen?

Humanity is learning to grow plants in space right now.

Beresheet 2 spacecraft mission

Lunar crop production in the coming years wantmembers of the organization Lunaria One, which includes specialists from Israel and Australia. Scientists from the Middle East will play a key role in this, because the Beresheet 2 spacecraft will be used to deliver the components needed to grow plants. Its launch is scheduled for 2025 - attempts to farm on the Moon will be made after the descent of the device.

Approximate appearance of the Beresheet 2 machine

Earlier we already talked about the first versionspacecraft Beresheet. It was supposed to land on the lunar surface in 2019, but crashed due to a number of problems. After that, the Israeli company SpaceIL decided to send a new version of the device to the moon, and then abandoned its idea. But, after some hesitation, the company decided to resume the mission of Beresheet 2 and today its development is in full swing.

See also: NASA has developed rules for the exploration of the moon - countries will be able to set their borders there

Growing Plants on the Moon

In order to prevent another accident, the leadersmissions will take a number of actions and correct past mistakes. In order not to damage the seeds of plants, they will place them in a special sealed compartment. It will have a water supply system and cameras to monitor the germination of shoots. Apparently, at first the plants will grow inside this compartment, and only then they will try to transplant them into the lunar soil. And even in this case, they are isolated from the environment so as not to pollute the Moon - we have already said that humanity managed to litter Mars.

Plants on the moon will be isolated from the external environment

For experiments on the moon,the scaly-leaved club moss (Selaginella lepidophylla), which is also known as the "resurrection plant", is used. It is remarkable in that it is able to stay in sleep mode for several years. Being in a dream, the plant is a dry brown ball. But, as soon as it gets access to water, an "awakening" occurs and the plant opens. The amazing plaunok has been known to science since 1830, but the Spanish colonialists knew about it for a long time and showed its awakening to the Indians, who considered it to be a resurrection from the dead.

Plaunok scaly in the period of awakening

Shot from the movie "The Martian"

It is worth noting that scientists have long been tryinggrow plants on the moon. In 2022, they managed to sow seeds in the lunar soil, which was brought to Earth during one of the previous missions. The experiment turned out to be difficult because the scientists had only 12 grams of regolith at their disposal - that's just a couple of teaspoons. Despite this, the planted plants were able to give the first shoots. They failed to develop further, but scientists were satisfied even with this result. After all, the ability of plants to sprout means that there is hope for the full cultivation of edible crops.

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Finally, it is worth recalling that earlier scientistshave developed special bags for growing plants on infertile lands. Considering that the lunar soil is just such, shouldn't space explorers take a closer look at this invention? You can read about how these bags work, which in the future can save us from hunger, in this material.