- Current plant-growth systems use soil or growing media, and the eXposed Root On-Orbit Test System (XROOTS) evaluates alternative approaches to reduce the overall system mass.
- XROOTS uses hydroponic and aeroponic techniques to deliver and recover nutrient solutions for plant root growth and contains multiple independent root growth chambers to evaluate alternative methods and configurations.
- Root zone and crop observation are recorded through video and still images.
- XROOTS is mounted below Veggie in place of the existing baseplate.
- Results provide insight into the development of larger-scale vegetable crop systems for space habitats.
A Space X Dragon resupply ship docked on the International Space Station with more than 5,800 pounds of science experiments and crew supplies delivered on Saturday inside the Dragon cargo craft. Among the experiments, the astronaut will conduct, the XROOTS experiment could pave the way to plant cultivation enhancement inside controlled environment agriculture facilities (CEA).
The eXposed Root On-Orbit Test System (XROOTS) is a Technology Demonstration integrated with the Veggie hardware currently aboard the International Space Station (ISS). The XROOTS investigation grows plants in the microgravity environment of the ISS and evaluates nutrient delivery and recovery techniques such as aeroponics over the course of a full plant growth cycle, from germination to maturity. Multiple independent growth chambers are used in parallel to evaluate alternative methods and configurations.
Growth system components developed for this investigation could enhance cultivation of plants in terrestrial settings such as greenhouses, contributing to better food security for people on Earth.
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