Soil Simulant Of NASA Witnesses Reproduction Of Earthworm – ZMR Blog
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Soil Simulant Of NASA Witnesses Reproduction Of Earthworm

Soil Simulant Of NASA Witnesses Reproduction Of Earthworm

A research team in the Netherlands has discovered that it is possible to reproduce earthworms in Mars soil simulant received from NASA. To provide food to the future inhabitants of Mars a viable sealed agricultural ecosystem is a prerequisite. A vital role will be played by worms in this system as they disintegrate and reprocess dead organic matter. The pee and poop of the Martian will also have to be utilized for soil fertilization, but for safety and practical reasons, the team has used pig slurry at present.

The team has since them supervised the development of the rocket (rucola) in the Mars soil simulant given by NASA to which slurry and worms have been added. Wieger Wamelink said, “Evidently, the compost-motivated growth, particularly in the Mars soil simulant, we observed that the worms were lively. Though, the best astonish arrived at the accomplishment of the trial was when we discovered 2 young worms within the Mars soil simulant.”

He further added, “The positive consequence of adding up compost was not unforeseen, but we are stunned that it makes Mars soil simulant do better than the Earth silver sand.” Organic matter was added by the team from previous trials to both sands. The manure was included in a test of the pots and later, after rucola’s germination, worms were added. We thus finished up with pots with all probable mixtures with the exemption of organic matter that was included in each of the pots.

Soil Simulant Of NASA Witnesses Reproduction Of Earthworm

Worms are extremely imperative for a healthy soil, not just on Earth but in future indoor gardens as well on the moon or Mars. They flourish on dead organic matter such as remains of old plants that they consume, chomp, and blend with soil prior to excreting it. This poop still includes organic matter that is disintegrated further by bacteria, consequently liberating nutrients such as phosphorus, potassium, and nitrogen to be used by the plants. By burrowing holes, the worms also ventilate and enhance the soil structure, making plant watering more efficient. The latter established to be very significant in previous trials where water would not simply infiltrate the soil. The team substantiated that “the use of worms will resolve this issue.”

To provide food to the future individuals living on the moon or Mars, the assignment “Food for Mars and Moon” intends to establish a viable agricultural system. It is founded on the existence of water (in the ice form) and soils on both the moon and Mars, and for Earth-based study, the team is using soil stimulants obtained by NASA. These simulants have originated from a desert in Arizona (moon) and a volcano in Hawaii (Mars).

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