Browse Publications Technical Papers 2002-01-2392
2002-07-15

Low Pressure Greenhouse Concepts for Mars: Atmospheric Composition 2002-01-2392

The main principles of artificial atmospheric design for a Martian Greenhouse (MG) are described based on:
  1. 1.
    Cost-effective approach to MG realization;
  2. 2.
    Using in situ resources (e.g. CO2, O2, water);
  3. 3.
    Controlled greenhouse gas exchange by using independent pump in and pump out technologies.
We show by mathematical modeling and numerical estimates based on reasonable assumptions that this approach for Martian deployable greenhouse (DG) implementation could be viable. A scenario of MG realization (in terms of plant biomass/photosynthesis, atmospheric composition, and time) is developed. A list is given of technologies (natural water collection, MG inflation, oxygen collection and storage, etc.) that are used in the design. The conclusions we reached are:
  1. 1.
    Initial stocks of oxygen and water probably would be required to initiate plant germination and growth;
  2. 2.
    Active control of MG ventilation could provide proper atmospheric composition for each period of plant growth;
  3. 3.
    MG operation based on simplest technological solutions could provide for oxygen accumulation for people arriving on Mars.
There is a reasonable prospect of achieving cost effectiveness during a single 600-day mission. A short description of future development of a Mars Greenhouse-project is presented.

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