Winner of the Astrosat & Huntsville Prize &
Winner of the Overall Prize
Current mission windows, frequencies and configurations limit the ability to grow and evaluate multiple generations of plants in space.
SustainSpace uses the relatively frequent flights of the SNC Dream Chaser and its controlled landing to grow several successive generations of plants in a space environment and produce a rapid evolutionary and selection process. This is an iterative process for rapidly evolving and improving populations of plants in the space environment.
The primary targets are users of life support systems in space, but also research institutions, the agriculture industry and STEM education.
SustainSpace uses flight-rated, automated plant growth chambers, such as those already developed for NASA or their own.
• Crops better suited to space life support: Faster growing, improved microgravity adaptation, better CO2 and waste usage
• Improved characteristics for future plants grown on Earth in extreme or special conditions
• Higher CO2-absorbing plants to reduce climate change
«Mark and Afshin’s proposal for utilising the Dream Chaser for developing agricultural assets for space exploration is a novel use of the space plane to deliver an essential component of any future human space exploration.
Their experience in genomics and aerospace is evident through a clear and comprehensive technical assessment of current technology and a solid business case for a product which is not easy to market.»
Business & Innovation Analyst
Stevenson Astrosat Limited
«The winning idea from SustainSpace will support space exploration goals and utilize the assets of both Dream Chaser and the Huntsville business community. We look forward to hosting their team and helping them advance their research into space-based agriculture.»
Chamber of Commerce of Huntsville/Madison County