Browse Publications Technical Papers 2005-01-2824
2005-07-11

Design Approach and Implementation of a Mars Surface Food Production Unit 2005-01-2824

This paper describes a design proposal for adapting the OGEGU Food Production Unit (FPU) to the surface of Mars in order to produce up to 40% of the diet for a six-member crew by growing a pre-defined set of vegetable food species. The external structure, lighting system and plant support system are assessed using ESM analysis.
The study shows that the mass of an FPU operating on the Mars surface, featuring an opaque inflatable structure plus all the required subsystems and equipment, is in the order of 14,000 kg. The required volume is around 150 m3 and the power consumption is around 140 kW. A reduction of c. 20 kW could be obtained by exploiting natural light using transparent materials. Finally, the paper concludes with the identification of some technological gaps that need to be investigated further for the purpose of establishing a feasible FPU on Mars.

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