In Brazil, in semiarid of Rio Grande do Norte State, is operating the Mars analog research station Habitat Marte. The station Habitat Marte is the only Mars analog habitat in operation in South hemisphere. Since December, 2017 just happened 29 missions with 700 hours, 80 participants and more than 50 days. During the simulation missions, the analog astronauts follow protocols and routines of a space station. In Extravehicular Activities (EVA) are used spacesuits to simulate to be in Mars or Moon landscape.
One advantages of Habitat Marte is to be located 28 ml/46 km away from Cabugi Volcano, an excellent hotspot to collect basalt. This feature contributes to the development of studies on the formulation of a Mars soil simulant in Brazil. Cabugi Peak is an extinct 590-meter-high volcano, with an age of 19 million years presenting basalt in the summit.
Basalt is also common in moon and Mars. Basaltic formations, common to volcanic areas, have been a source of research to identify whether this raw material can be used to develop a Mars simulant soil.
Research on Martian soil simulation reveals its importance in seeking to evaluate how the development and behavior of plants in these soils will be, in order to evaluate the cultivation of food that will allow the feeding of future settlements on Mars and the moon.
Future research will answer how analogous to Mars is the rock and soils collected in Cabugi volcano.
Frequently, HABITAT MARTE receives students from schools and universities. In these moments is presented concepts of sustainability and space. The meeting with students and researchers shows the role of transferring knowledge and technologies to rural producers, students and teachers for the eradication of poverty (SDG1); fighting hunger (SDG2); promotion of education (SDG4) and sustainability (SDG13).
In the greenhouse BioHabitat records an expansion of 33 meters in area. BioHabitat is going from an area of 12 meters to 45 meters. Part of this area accommodates two different aquaponics systems.
In the visits to Habitat Marte students are introduced to the value of agricultural activities and the need to incorporate innovation such as the use of aquaponics systems, which has the role of producing food with water savings.
The Habitat Marte is looking for opportunities of partnerships. Coordinator: Prof. Julio Rezende – firstname.lastname@example.org.