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article imageScientist wants to use LED light to grow plants on other planets

By Walter McDaniel     Jul 14, 2014 in Science
Ontario - Researcher Mike Dixon with the University of Guelph in Canada has some big plans to amplify Light-Emitting Diode (LED) energy. If these work they could provide an energy source for plants to grow on Mars and other planets throughout the solar system.
Dixon is currently testing his theory about growing the plants on a spacecraft or even on a lunar outpost itself. His current research is on trying to find the exact wavelength that will optimize growth for these plants. Dixon himself notes that The Canadian Space Agency limps along on a budget that wouldn't change the tires on the space shuttle, so it's quite remarkable they achieve what they do,
so he is reportedly trying to do less with more. He believes that humanity will be able to reach this point "over the next 100 years."
LED equipment is quite efficient which has a variety of benefits. While some craft have internal generators trips usually go better when explorers need less energy. How to get enough energy for colonization efforts is one of the major questions that scientists are currently debating.
LED devices have become big business since we have been able to mold them into a variety of shapes. We can now make them look like traditional bulbs or even artwork as well. This has made them a commercially viable option for many companies.
Japanese companies have led the way in this area as well. Keystone Technology scientists have created vast warehouses where plants are grown under LED light that allegedly has them grow into a better quality product. They also have a thriving tourist industry from those who want to see the new technology.
The final question is how these plants will get water in space. This has for the most part already been solved by hydroponics. This system allows us to control, recycle and fortify water within containers so that we can grow plants where none could sprout up before. Some assert that not only will this aid space exploration but also could help solve world hunger.
More about Astronomy, Science, Biology, Vegetation, hydroponics
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