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PES2020-Prosj.etabl.støtte H2020

Technology and Innovation for Development of Modular Equipment in Scalable Advanced Life Support Systems for Space Exploration (TIME SCALE)

Awarded: NOK 0.30 mill.

The TIME SCALE project will bring regenerative life support research to the next level by building on and further develop the modular philosophy introduced in the existing Columbus laboratory infrastructure. The European Modular Cultivation System (EMCS) has been successful and operational for seven years on-orbit and the rotors allow for scientific research under both fractional gravity exposures (Moon/Mars) and microgravity conditions. The modular design provides the possibility to replace the individua l subsystems and component, including the entire rotor system. The TIME SCALE main objective is to develop a crop cultivation rotor breadboard and demonstrate the operational capability of such a rotor for ISS. The crop cultivation rotor will represent the next logical and feasible step for scientific research within higher plants and regenerative life support systems (LSS) for space exploration; to grow and allow research on food crops. Scientific knowledge of crop fundamental processes such as biomass production, photosynthesis and gas exchange and transport of water and solutes are essential for space exploration to establish mathematical models on crop relevant for microgravity and Moon/Mars conditions. This next generation rotor concept to be desig ned and developed in this project will provide generic interfaces to several regenerative life support system components, allowing future integration of LSS subsystems such as crop, algae bioreactors and mouse compartments. The closed water and nutrient management subsystem and the plant health monitoring have been identified as two focal areas. Knowledge and technology related to nutrient and water recycling and early warning for crop suboptimal growth has significant terrestrial relevance for greenhous e systems and has been recognized in the Horizon-2020 (e.g. Sustainable crop production calls).

Funding scheme:

PES2020-Prosj.etabl.støtte H2020