Browse Publications Technical Papers 2002-01-2383
2002-07-15

Evaluation of an Ebb and Flow Nutrient Delivery Technique Applicable to Growing Plants in Microgravity 2002-01-2383

A promising approach for the watering and aeration of substrates in space-based plant root modules is to use a periodic watering/evacuation through a porous membrane or an Ebb/Flow Nutrient Delivery System (EFNDS). Wheat (Triticum aestivum cv Yecora rojo) grown utilizing the EFNDS approach achieved productivities equivalent to controls employing a traditional direct flow approach. When the EFNDS approach is used in conjunction with a fibrous ion-exchange resin substrate (FIERS), the ebb cycle effectively vented 50-55% of the FIERS pores by volume (resupplying oxygen), and freed the substrate of unwanted root exudates. Several advantages of the EFNDS approach can be crucial during plant cultivation in microgravity.

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