×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

NASA Will Send Seeds to the Moon In 2015

Unknown Lamer posted about 4 months ago | from the gardening-for-nerds dept.

Space 92

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "The Telegraph reports that NASA plans to send turnip, cress, and basil seeds to the Moon inside a specially constructed canister, known as the Lunar Plant Growth Chamber. The chamber will carry enough air for 10 days and NASA says the air in the chamber would be adequate to allow the seeds to sprout and grow for five days. It is hoped that the latest experiment will help to pave the way for astronauts to grow their own food while living on a lunar base. NASA says it will use natural sunlight to germinate the plants inside the chamber and the seeds will grow on pieces of filter paper laden with nutrients. 'If we send plants and they thrive, then we probably can. Thriving plants are needed for life support — food, air, water — for colonists. And plants provide psychological comfort, as the popularity of the greenhouses in Antarctica and on the Space Station show.' The Lunar Plant Growth Chamber is expected to weigh around 2.2lbs and will also carry 10 seeds each of basil and turnips. Upon landing on the Moon a trigger would release a small reservoir of water to wet the filter paper and initiate the germination of the seeds. Photographs of the seedlings would be taken at regular intervals to monitor their progress and compare them to seedlings being growing in similar conditions on Earth."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

92 comments

Human Spirit (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598187)

Let's grow stuff anywhere we can. We are creators much more than destroyers.

Re:Human Spirit (1)

Nexus7 (2919) | about 4 months ago | (#45598913)

Human spirit? OK. What about NASA spirit? You know, man on the moon, Pioneer going wherever the hell it is going, and things of that scale? I mean, I understand budgets, and maybe this is one experiment of 1000 in its mission, but a self-sustaining bio-dome, with solar-powered robots tending to it, plants, arthropods; some way to bootstrap living conditions, and then solar and recycling to maintain it - that'd be more like it.

Re:Human Spirit be dammed (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45602941)

Great, more invasive species, we are destroyers much more than creators.
Now that we have perfected fucking up our planet, lets start on others.

Re:Human Spirit be dammed (4, Insightful)

tibman (623933) | about 4 months ago | (#45603105)

I'm sorry, is there some delicate ecosystem of dust on the moon that we should protect?

Re:Human Spirit be dammed (1)

master5o1 (1068594) | about 4 months ago | (#45603699)

After leaving the cast of The Simpson's, Cleatus Spuckler expanded his dirt farming operations into a multi-million dollar corporation. He has stated to shareholders that he plans to expand his operations onto the moon, to farm that beautiful lunar dirt.

Re:Human Spirit be dammed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45617027)

no, its the principle of the matter. you had better get your mommy to explain principles to you fucktard.

Re:Human Spirit be dammed (1)

tibman (623933) | about 4 months ago | (#45618937)

Ah yes, i forgot my childhood lesson of "don't disturb the dust on airless moons and planets".

But seriously, there is a difference between polluting the Earth and polluting the Moon. Not only is there nothing alive on the Moon. There will never be anything living on the moon unless humans put it there. If you are saying "The purity of the Moon must be kept!" then your principles are not something the majority of people would ever be interested in. I would rather see a giant corporate Disney theme park on the moon with Starbuck's coffee bulbs littering the moon-scape than a Moon that we cannot reach and left "pure".

Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (1)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about 4 months ago | (#45598257)

When they send the next man there.

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45598947)

that's funny, because as of yet Chinese only talk of going to moon. they do not have a rocket system with the capacity to achieve that

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (2)

bre_dnd (686663) | about 4 months ago | (#45599433)

For a man perhaps not yet -- but you did see this one right? http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-25178299 [bbc.co.uk]

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45599799)

sure, but divide the payload capacity of that Long March 3B rocket by the Saturn V's and let me know the number, well over 30 I believe

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about 4 months ago | (#45614951)

note that next year, they will have the LM5, which will do 25 tonnes to LEO. SatV was 120 tonnes, so only 5x.
However, at the same time that LM5 comes, SpaceX will launch FH which will do 53 tonnes to LEO. Throw in a raptor engine as a tug, hooked to a BA-330, and we can send 5-7 ppl to the moon easily. And this is doable by 2020. All that is needed are crafts that can land on the moon and take off again. Thankfully, NASA and others (including SpaceX) are working on this.

By 2035 (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 4 months ago | (#45604315)

China's plan is NOT sending man to moon until AFTER 2035

By then, if everything has gone according to plan, China would have a full fetch space station in the orbit which has the capability of assembling rockets (which are sent up part by part) and then launch them into whichever destination they are supposed to go to (be it moon or mars or beyond)

That is why China is not, and does not yet have any plan to build a rocket as powerful as the Saturn V rocket

Re:By 2035 (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45604487)

China has said by 2025 they will put man on moon, look it up.
The Proton rocket used to send up parts of the ISS had twice the payload capacity for LEO as this Chinese rocket. And the ISS is not the kind of station that can assemble lunar rockets.

China has a long, long way to go.

Re:By 2035 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604827)

China has a rong, rong way to go.

FTFY.

Re:By 2035 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45609887)

No. The sound they use is as far from "R" as it is from "L".

Say "Rick" and "Lick" out loud, back and forth, over and over, note the placement of your tongue at the R and L sound. Find the spot somewhere in the middle, and say that word. That's the sound that East Asian speakers are saying. Unless they are exposed to English (or other R/L-distinct languages, but let's be honest, it's always English) a lot before they turn 11-12yrs old, they will always find it difficult to even hear a distinction between the two sounds. R and L sound to them like the same sounds but spoken with a slightly different regional accent.

Re:By 2035 (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about 4 months ago | (#45614963)

wrong. They have LM5 (25 tonnes to LEO) coming in 2014, and they have already started work on a 100+ tonne to LEO LV.

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45600193)

IF China sends someone in the near future the only reason will be because life is cheap, not because it's a good idea to attempt it.

Re:Good, the Chinese will have something to grow (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about 4 months ago | (#45614977)

And China would be right to do it.
Do note that America sent humans to the moon 3 years after the stage that China is in today. And China does not have original work. They are simply copying others, which makes it MUCH faster and easier to get there.

Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598289)

Wouldn't it be easier to just send up a satellite and build a centrifuge to test different gravitational forces? Why spend all the pain to go and land on the Moon when you could simulate both the Moon and Mars in Earth orbit?

Re:Why? (2)

Spy Handler (822350) | about 4 months ago | (#45598433)

Because doing X is always cooler than doing a simulation of X.

And also the delta-v required for moon landing is not all that much more than placing something in a long-term orbit. Especially if you consider the additional energy requirements for launching and maintaining a centrifuge.

Re:Why? (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#45599863)

Is that why girls are throwing them at fighter jocks pilots rather than at me, even though I own Microsoft Flight Simulator AND Jane's USAF?

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45600015)

Simulator for simulate girls (aka .jpg) and jocks for real girls. :(

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45610523)

And also the delta-v required for moon landing is not all that much more than placing something in a long-term orbit. Especially if you consider the additional energy requirements for launching and maintaining a centrifuge.

Have a look how small the "greenhouse" is. It has a total mass of 1kg. Spinning a 1kg mass at 1/6g would need a 10kg device that could live entirely within one experiment rack on ISS.

The real answer is, "They hope to be able to get a free ride with a Lunar-X contestant."

Basil? (2)

byeley (2451634) | about 4 months ago | (#45598315)

Why not something easier/more efficient like seaweed?

Unfortunately seems like more of a publicity thing.

Re:Basil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598361)

Personally, I'd rather have basil on my space pizza and pasta than seaweed.

Re:Basil? (3, Funny)

NEDHead (1651195) | about 4 months ago | (#45598689)

The Sea of Tranquility is not a sea in the normal sense, so seaweed doesn't really make sense.

Re:Basil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604623)

Sea of 'Tranquility' and seaWeed makes a lot of sense if you just think, 'puff, puff, pass'.

Re:Basil? (5, Informative)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#45598895)

If you look at the choices they're different types of plants that provide different things: Basil / Cress, seasoning, greenery -- You eat the leaves. Turnip, a tuberous plant with starch / calories -- you eat the root. I recall a prior story about this that also listed Sunflower seeds: Oils, proteins -- You eat the seeds; And another small flowering plant which herpetologists have gene sequenced and use as a model... Can't recall its name, ATM.

From TFSA (the fucking space agency): [nasa.gov]

Plant growth at Earth gravity has been well studied and there has been a lot of research on plant growth in microgravity on Shuttle and Space Station. Recently, ISS payloads have been able to simulate partial gravity (eg. Kiss et al. 2012, Planta 236, 635-645.). The surface of the Moon however is the only location in which the effects of both lunar gravity and lunar radiation on plant growth can be studied. Eventually human exploration of the Moon will require plant growth systems for life support. Germination is the first step in plant growth and thus forms the focus of this first experiment. We will also look for phototropism and circumnutation. The basic data from the experiment would be the growth rate, expressed as leaf area, over time. This would be extracted from images of the plant growth area. In addition image data would be collected to investigate both phototropism (plant motion in response to changes in position of the light source) and circumnutation (plant circular motion). The growth and movement of the plants on the Moon would be compared to similar data from Earth controls in identical growth units.

The growth rates will be important for determining how much space will be required to grow food to feed Astronauts who take extended trips to the moon base. Of course it'll have the crew rotated like the ISS due to atrophy in weaker gravity, but they may be able to stay longer on the moon's gravity than in orbital microgravity.

This research isn't a waste of money or publicity thing. The question isn't can we grow a plant on the moon, it's can we grow tasty edible things up there and eventually get a few of our eggs out of this one basket. The moon is made of the same ratios of elements the Earth is. This means we may eventually be able to dome over some craters or caves / mines, and get plants and microbes -- possibly genetically engineered life -- to break down the rock into organic chemical rich dirt and air, then grow other crops. We're a long way away from bio-dome construction and lunar microbes; However, we have the technology to launch and connect a lunar habitat, and possibly grow plants therein -- We already know for sure that plants can grow in near zero G.

Exposing seeds to UV or Cosmic Rays is one way to accelerate mutation and this is currently used to speed up cultivation of desirable traits in crops -- Moon crop technology could help feed people on Earth. I always think about space exploration when I brush my teeth with the non-toxic toothpaste and clean water sanitation system that NASA invented for Astronauts and terra lubbers alike.

Re:Basil? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 4 months ago | (#45598957)

s/herpetologists/botanist/
Herbology / herbalism / herbal medicine isn't what I meant either. Bad combination of brain fart and auto-correct.

Re:Basil? (1)

RenderSeven (938535) | about 4 months ago | (#45599245)

UV or Cosmic Rays is one way to accelerate mutation

We now return to "Killer Basil Women on the Moon" with no further commercial interruptions.

Re:Basil? (1)

byeley (2451634) | about 4 months ago | (#45599925)

The point was that "tasty edible things" is an unearned luxury; we haven't figured out the sustainability part yet. The research may prove useful in the long run, but it's jumping the gun (presumably because "We can grow the things you eat at home on the moon!" sounds better for publicity purposes).

The massive inefficiencies in our food production (and the fact that we scoff at things like the UN report on edible insects) is frustrating, but extending that to an environment harsher than any on Earth is downright dumb.

Re:Basil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45610177)

And another small flowering plant which herpetologists have gene sequenced and use as a model... Can't recall its name, ATM.

The Thale Cress viper.

Re:Basil? (1, Funny)

RenderSeven (938535) | about 4 months ago | (#45599201)

Why not send corn, and get the ethanol subsidy? Or better yet, send nothing and get a check for basil price supports. NASA could presumably use the money and there is a lot of moon to not grow stuff on.

Re:Basil? (1)

QRDeNameland (873957) | about 4 months ago | (#45599685)

Why not send marijuana, and then the US could seize the moon under civil forfeiture laws?

Re:Basil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45605299)

The trichromes are more potent in a higher pressure atmosphere (possibly).

Re:Basil? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45610305)

Send Opium poppies and some Al Qaeda literature and the US can spend half a trillion dollars invading and occupying the moon.

Re:Basil? (1)

lxs (131946) | about 4 months ago | (#45605467)

If they can grow basil on the moon they can grow anything.

I can't even keep basil alive on my windowsill.

The "new" cylons... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598351)

Oh, great. Instead of mechanical, our "cylons" will be vegetation...

Perhaps send a small animal as well. (2)

Loether (769074) | about 4 months ago | (#45598393)

I wonder if they sent a mouse or appropriate sized o2 to co2 animal how long the seeds could grow. I guess you'd also need a heater to keep the mouse alive in the cold of space. They could send a little bit of radioactive material to help regulate the temp. It just seems a shame to go all the way to the moon for a 5 day experiment.

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (5, Insightful)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about 4 months ago | (#45598605)

I wonder if they sent a mouse or appropriate sized o2 to co2 animal how long the seeds could grow. I guess you'd also need a heater to keep the mouse alive in the cold of space. They could send a little bit of radioactive material to help regulate the temp. It just seems a shame to go all the way to the moon for a 5 day experiment.

Don't send a mouse... send fruit flies or aphids. That way, you've got something that can eat the plants without totally killing them as well as cycle the O2 to CO2. Plus, PETA doesn't tend to get upset about experiments on fruit flies and aphids for some reason.

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (1)

RenderSeven (938535) | about 4 months ago | (#45599297)

PETA doesn't tend to get upset about experiments on fruit flies and aphids

PETA? People for the Ethical Treatment of Aphids? I dont think they would like it at all!

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (1)

antdude (79039) | about 4 months ago | (#45608137)

Hey now. Ants and I, as your overlord, would get upset with aphids. Ants 3 them! I am still upset after that ant colony and others were lost from Columbia space shuttle landing disaster back in 2003. :~(

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (1)

lagomorpha2 (1376475) | about 4 months ago | (#45598737)

I guess you'd also need a heater to keep the mouse alive in the cold of space.

Pretty sure you'd need some sort of temperature regulation for seeds to sprout in space, most tend to now like to start growing while it's still winter for some reason.

Also space isn't really cold in the same sense that touching something cold is, it's an excellent insolator of heat.

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#45599921)

"Revenge is a dish best served cold. It's very well insulated in space" Just doesn't have the same effect.

Re:Perhaps send a small animal as well. (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 4 months ago | (#45601373)

I wonder if they sent a mouse or appropriate sized o2 to co2 animal how long the seeds could grow.

Because you start simple and work your way up when doing these kinds of thing. And because seeds convert very little CO2 to O2 because they consume very little CO2. The mouse would be dead pretty quickly.
 

I guess you'd also need a heater to keep the mouse alive in the cold of space. They could send a little bit of radioactive material to help regulate the temp

But then, once on the warm surface of the lit side of the moon... he'd likely be screwed by the combined heat of the source and the radiant heat of the surface. Assuming he hasn't died because of the lack of O2... or the lack of water. Or the lack of food. Or... etc... etc...

Life support, like pretty much anything else in space, gets really complicated really fast once you get beyond a couple of hours duration.

Hemp base Alpha please respond! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598415)

Need more product.

Re:Hemp base Alpha please respond! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598741)

        Hippies, NASA Race for Moon
        Friday, October 4, 1968

        The space race between NASA and the hippies is more heated than ever, with both of the astronautic super-powers vying to be the first to land a man on the moon.

        "NASA will win the race to the moon, and the world will see a United States astronaut, not a longhair, walk on the moon before the turn of the decade," Apollo 10 Mission Director Gus Lance said Thursday.

        Despite NASA's confidence, hippie-space-program sources report that the moon will be within their reach in mere months. "Freakonauts have already outdistanced NASA in their high rate of success with manned missions throughout the Tibetan Book of the Dead and cosmic voyages Beyond Total Awareness," said Freedog Osmosis, head of the prestigious Haight-Ashbury Center for Astraldynamic Research. "And current missions are flying higher than ever. Take me, for example. I'm sitting right in front of you. Yet, even as we speak, I'm orbiting at tremendous altitudes."

        "We are 12 to 16 weeks away from having all the vibes in place to launch, orbit and land a hippie on the moon," Osmosis said, "as well as to return him safely to a big oversized floor pillow after wear-off and subsequent crashpad re-entry burn." With the Lunar Excursion Module proven flightworthy in recent Apollo test missions, it is only a matter of time, NASA scientists argue, before they win the race to the moon. However, hippies say, a NASA victory in the space race is by no means certain.

        "From such early victories as The Byrds' historic eight-mile-high test flight above San Francisco Bay to recent trips by The Rolling Stones as far as 60,000 light-years from home, it's clear that our radical, substance-based approach to space travel boasts significant advantages over NASA's more conservative methods," said space-cadet hippychick Raven Transcendence.
        Transcendence added that the hippie space program also enjoys a clear economic advantage over NASA: While the cost of a NASA lunar mission is estimated at $600 million, the hippie space program, she said, can reach the moon with just a a dime bag.

        Hippie space exploration, however, has not been without its setbacks. In June, shortly after setting his controls for the heart of the sun, Floyd Commander Syd Barrett lost control of his 50-milligram capsule and veered wildly off course. According to hippie scientist, he is currently lost somewhere near Neptune. The scientists project that the Floyd program will not match NASA's Apollo 8 orbit of the dark side of the moon until the mid 1970s.

        "Yes, hippie space travel does have its problems," Osmosis said. "The severe crash-and-burns that follow intense spaceflight can be devastating, and launch windows are dependent on the week-to-week booking schedule at the Fillmore West. Nonetheless, we have repeatedly reached the Sea of Undulating Joy-Vibes, and we're confident that a flower child will touch down on the Sea of Tranquility soon, certainly no later htan the big Woodstock festival next summer."

[from the onion - but not currently availble on their site]

why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598453)

what will they learn from growing stuff on the moon? have they not collected enough information as it is from the countless experiments performed in the ISS? it seems to me to be a waste of time or this is merely a cover story for something more secretive that they may be up to.

Re:why? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45598973)

no, plants under "weightless" conditions act differently than ones in gravitational field. The question is if germination will proceed normally in 1/6 earth g field

Cruelty (3, Funny)

razvan784 (1389375) | about 4 months ago | (#45598483)

"NASA is performing an inhumane act by needlessly killing living organisms on Moon mission, wasting taxpayer money on a cheap publicity stunt", says animal rights group that became notorious a few posts ago for trying to grant chimps person status. "Plants are living things too, and one cannot simply destroy them for entertainment", said group spokesperson in an exclusive interview.

Re:Cruelty (1)

ImprovOmega (744717) | about 4 months ago | (#45601811)

I think he should stop being a hypocrite eating salads and other plant-based nutrients then. He could become like this super vegan or something for like a month or so before he dies of starvation =P

Re:Cruelty (1)

pne (93383) | about 4 months ago | (#45606255)

I think he should stop being a hypocrite eating salads and other plant-based nutrients then. He could become like this super vegan or something for like a month or so before he dies of starvation =P

They're called "fruitarians", eating only what falls off the plant by itself, rather than a portion of a living, growing plant.

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45598601)

Beware seeding those torrents of Liberty!

Water (2)

SkOink (212592) | about 4 months ago | (#45598909)

The moon is pretty dry. If if this is supposed to be some proof-of-concept for growing food in a lunar base/colony, don't they need to address the larger issue of where such a garden would get its water?

If we have to transport the water to the moon as well as all of the raw materials (dirt, plant nutrients), what possible savings could there be against just stocking a base with MREs?

Re:Water (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#45599947)

Plants provide multiple benefits beyond just food. They recycle CO2 into oxygen, and they look damned pretty, which will probably help ward off a case of the crazies better than a storage room full of foil wrappers.

Re:Water (1)

cbhacking (979169) | about 4 months ago | (#45603863)

They're also self-replacing. MREs don't fill (or recycle) themselves. If it was possible to reach a point where food could be grown sustainably for even a few people, that would be a huge boon toward more permanent research outposts (think Antarctic research stations or the ISS, not Luna City or a Mars colony). For that matter, that would be the first step toward making a viable colony too... you may not be able to make one completely self-sufficient out of current tech, but you should try to get closer than needing to send up *everything* that gets consumed!

too short a time (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45598989)

should monitor plant germination and subsequent growth for months, would be much more useful knowledge

Re:too short a time (1)

CCarrot (1562079) | about 4 months ago | (#45599905)

should monitor plant germination and subsequent growth for months, would be much more useful knowledge

That was my first thought as well.

Of course, what this will do is see if the whole concept is viable without committing too much in case it flops. If they won't even sprout, no point in proceeding with more elaborate (and expensive) experiments until you figure out what went wrong with this one, but still, it does seem to be a bit short a timeframe to gain much more than a proof-of-concept level of data. I suppose they're just trying to keep the payload small...

Re:too short a time (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45600053)

No - consider the moon's rotation and you will soon see any given spot on the surface gets about 14 days of sun followed by 14 days of darkness. If this trip is well timed, the pod can experience the 10 days of maximum sun in the middle. Seeds surviving 14 days in the dark is unlikely, so even if the pod had air for two months, the plants would still be dead after the first lunar 'night'.

Re:too short a time (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#45600177)

How much light would the moon get from earthshine during lunar night? Would it be enough for low-light species to get by?

Re:too short a time (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45604337)

The plants don't have to be in darkness for 14 days, there could be "grow lamps", maybe running off storage system charged during the sunlight times. artificial nights during the 14 days of sunlight is even more easily solved.

Re:too short a time (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about 4 months ago | (#45605441)

You don't want artificial nights, plants are quite happy with an arctic summer.

Re:too short a time (1)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about 4 months ago | (#45605461)

Oops, self-correction after finally reading one of the linked articles: "Plants do most of their respiration at night, so keeping them in constant sunlight means they're unable to exhale." So unless they use arctic-specific plants they need a night. I'd think heating and cooling would be the biggest problem really on the moon.

Re:too short a time (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 4 months ago | (#45610619)

Now you've turned a 1kg micro-experiment which consists of some seeds stuck to nutrient-soaked tissue paper inside a clear plastic panel with a webcam attached, bolted onto the side of someone else's lander, into something that requires perhaps a cubic metre of volume, lights, heaters, an irrigation system, months of air, and a power-source that can survive 14 days of continuous darkness every month, and almost certainly a dedicated launch (and lander).

Re:too short a time (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 4 months ago | (#45614303)

in other words, an experiment with some hope of relevance to solving problem of actually growing crops on the moon. yes, thank you for your perception.

Marigolds! (1)

Rob Riggs (6418) | about 4 months ago | (#45599283)

Why would you not send Marigolds [wikipedia.org] if you had a chance for such an experiment? Besides, we will need bees on the moon; so we're going to need flowers. Plants don't pollinate themselves.

Re:Marigolds! (1)

ChromeAeonium (1026952) | about 4 months ago | (#45602403)

Plants don't pollinate themselves.

Some plants, like tomato, eggplant, okra, pepper, eggplant and the common bean, do just that. Others, like corn, are wind pollinated, and still others, like root/bulb crops (potato, sweet potato, onion, carrot, cassava, yam, taro, parsnip, ect.), cole crops (broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, cabbage, ect.), leafy greens (lettuce, celery, spinach, leek, ect.), and a good number of herbs/spices (basil, oregano, garlic, chives, dill, wasabi, cilantro, ginger, ect.), don't need pollination to produce a crop. In the long term there are a lot of crops pollinated by bees that humanity will want to take into space at some point, but there's enough crops that don't need them that I don't think bees are absolutely essential for short term space projects.

Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds (1)

Hugh Pickens DOT Com (2995471) | about 4 months ago | (#45599483)

Study The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds [wikipedia.org].

Shy Matilda "Tillie" Hunsdorfer prepares her experiment, involving marigolds raised from seeds exposed to radioactivity, for the science fair. She is, however, constantly thwarted by her mother Beatrice, who is self-centered and abusive, and by her extroverted and unstable sister Ruth, who submits to her mother's will. Over the course of the play, Beatrice constantly tries to stamp out any opportunities Tillie has of succeeding, due to her own lack of success in life. As the play progresses, the paths of the three characters diverge: Tillie wins the science fair through perseverance; Ruth attempts to stand up to her mother but has a nervous collapse at the end of the play, and Beatrice - driven to the verge of insanity by her deep-seated enmity towards everyone - kills the girls' pet rabbit Peter and ends up wallowing in her own perceived insignificance. Despite this, Tillie (who is much like her project's deformed but beautiful and hardy marigolds) secretly continues to believe that everyone is valuable.

Sent the wrong seeds (1)

CCarrot (1562079) | about 4 months ago | (#45599959)

Should have sent dandelion seeds, those damn things will grow anywhere! And they're technically edible...but still annoying.

Re:Sent the wrong seeds (1)

SJHillman (1966756) | about 4 months ago | (#45600191)

My mother made dandelion wine one year. It took us eight years to get through two gallons of it. Hella potent stuff. Just what the moon needs.

We return to the moon... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45600525)

And this time it's for a second-grade science experiment.

modC down (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45600787)

become obsessed of progress. This post brought every day...Like wasn't on Steve's of business and All major surveys would you like to private sex party FUCKING USELESS Variations on the obsessives and the be on a wrong Lube or we sell A way to spend it simple, while the projec7 it wiil be among The mobo blew stand anymore, These rules will mutated testicle of Fact there won't are incompatible Volume of NetBSD Bleak future. In be a lot slower where it belongs, move any equipment is part of the 'first post' distributions [tuxedo.org], available to FreeBSD is already BSD style.' In the gains market share consider worthwhile obsessed - give contributed code big deal. Death The resignation faster, cheaper,

Moon Miners Manifesto 1996 (1)

retroworks (652802) | about 4 months ago | (#45603199)

http://asi.org/adb/06/09/03/02/093/redhousing.html [asi.org] This 1996 publication "Breeding Plants for the Mars Environment" seemed to put more thought into what species are likliest to thrive (on Mars), and was less human-centric. It does seem to make sense to test lichens, cacti, a wider variety of plants known for resilience in addition to turnips and basil.

Moon's light-cycle (1)

BringsApples (3418089) | about 4 months ago | (#45603249)

A day on the Moon lasts 29.5 of our Earth days. In other words, if you were standing on the surface of the Moon, it would take 29.5 days for the Sun to move entirely through the sky and return to its original position.

I'm not sure why they're not sending spores up first. Mycelium is capable of living off of the oxygen that's supposedly in the moon's soil (H2O) and is capable of providing carbon. And they don't care about light.

Lunar Weed Station (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45603911)

That's my original proposal to NASA. Seems that they changed the scope of my idea.

Why not cocoa ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604333)

I'm just in the mood for a moon pie.

Sugar Care, Hops and barley (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45604661)

Need to brighten up the moon a bit ;-)

George MacDonald

Marijuana ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#45605881)

Useful crop :-)

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...