Microporous Membrane Nutrient Delivery Systems for Sweetpotato in Microgravity 951706
Long-term manned space missions will require life support processes including food production. Porous plate and tube membrane systems have been identified to have potential for crop production in a microgravity environment. Of several systems tested, a stainless steel plate membrane system with a porous medium underneath has proven to be superior in terms of the uniformity of nutrient solution distribution. Several trials with sweetpotatoes, showed successful plant growth, with reduced foliage and storage root yield as compared to the nutrient film technique (NFT). These results can be attributed to reduced nutrient solution availability compared to NFT. It is expected that design improvements can increase sweetpotato yield..