What is an underground laboratory that is vital to life on Mars?

Mars, the planet that has awakened man’s fascination for centuries (NASA)

Researchers of University of BirminghamThe United Kingdom introduced the scheme sphere of life (Biomedical sub-surface pod habitat and extreme environment research expeditionsAs per its name in English) a unique research facility is located 1.1 km below the surfaceIn one of England’s deepest mines.

The project explores how scientific and medical activities can be carried out in challenging environments such as the Moon and Mars. It is the first in a series of new lab facilities planned to study how humans can work and stay healthy Long space missionsA vital requirement to guarantee continuity of operations on other planets.

Research detailing the concept and design of this unique habitat was recently published Natural (NPJ) Microgravity.

The team works in collaboration with Polby Underground LaboratoryAn underground facility focusing on particle physics, geoscience and astronomy research, it is run by the Science and Technology Facilities Council, part of Research and Innovation UK, with support from Polby mine operators.

A module in a deep space habitat containing a wall of plant growth necessary to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen, robotic assistance, science kit (microscopes) and a glove box to allow handling of the contained material. Image credit: NASA.

The Bio-Sphere project is based on a 3,000 square meter network of tunnels adjacent to the Bowlby Laboratory that runs through rock salt deposits. 250 million years oldIt consists of remnant Permian evaporite strata from the Sechtean Sea.

This geological setting, along with its location deep underground, has allowed researchers to recreate the operating conditions under which humans worked in similar caves on the Moon and Mars. This includes distance, Limited access to new products and the challenges of moving heavy equipment.

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At the same time, thanks to the extremely low radiation environment provided by that depth, the location will allow scientists to explore How Useful Are Underground Habitats? To protect space crews from deep space radiation, which can pose a significant risk to space exploration will damage infrastructure Life support.

There will be 6 modules to support these activities, with solar panels to meet energy needs. Image credit: University of Birmingham.

The first facility to open as part of Bio-SPHERE is based on a three-meter-wide simulation module and is designed to test the biomedical procedures needed to produce materials to treat tissue damage. This includes Complex fluids, polymers e Hydrogels For regenerative medicine, it can be used on wounds or grafts to reduce inflammation.

Bio-Sphere, incorporating multiple capabilities for sterile work and material processing, integrates these facilities Simulation and A Effective geographic organization With access to nearby physics and chemistry laboratory facilities.

The environment offers the opportunity to simulate various mission scenarios and perform cutting-edge interdisciplinary science, from the effects of extreme environments on biological and physicochemical parameters and clinical infrastructure to investigating how on-site resources are available. ambient pressureTemperature and geography can be used for habitat construction.

This stabilization is very useful for this type of habitat as it makes it easier to construct, control and maintain atmospheric conditions. Communication capabilities, such as the Internet, connect surface nodes to facilitate data transfer and video and audio communications. Image credit: University of Birmingham.

Principal Investigator Alexandra Iardasescu from the University of Birmingham’s School of Chemical Engineering, explained: “We are delighted to be partnering with the fantastic scientific team at the Bowlby Underground Laboratory.”

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“This new capability will enable us to collect information that can inform advice about life support systems, devices and biomaterials. Medical emergencies Y Tissue repair After damage in missions in deep space”, confirmed the researcher.

“These kinds of metrics are guiding System design and help assess scientific needs and acceptable timeframes in bioengineering activities under the constraints of isolated environments such as space habitats,” Iordachescu continued..

He continued: “This data can also provide many benefits to companies. Earth based applicationsPerforming biomedical interventions in remote areas or hazardous environments and, more generally, understanding Biomedical workflows In these non-ideal environments.

In the installation, a sub-module is required for bioprocessing of materials and extraction of biochemical components (NASA).

Sean PaulingDirector and Principal Scientist of Boulby’s Underground Laboratory said: “We are very excited to be working with the team at the University of Birmingham on this exciting work.”

“Los Challenges What lies ahead for humanity Habitat Survey “There are clearly many and significant ones beyond Earth,” the scientist said.

“The Bio-Sphere project promises to help answer some questions Key logistics Pauling said, “to create sustainable living conditions in remote subterranean environments and, in doing so, significantly contribute to essential preparations for our long, arduous and exciting collective journey.”

“It’s a great example of the different kinds of scientific research that can be done on it Deep underground science facilitywe are very excited to host it,” he concluded. From Science Publishing, Neil Eisenstein and Gareth Appleby-Thomas also participated.

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