In the late afternoon of Thursday, March 12, 2020, the first case of coronavirus in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil, was confirmed. Here, operates since December 2017, the Mars analog Research Station Habitat Marte where just happen 32 missions.
The coronavirus threat to human life valorizes the importance of self-sustainable (off grid) habitats. The functioning of Mars analog habitats, according to the off grid characteristic, is strategic for the survival of communities under biological threats, in order to be able to function in isolation, without external contact, such as Mars Desert Research Station (US), HI-SEAD (Hawaii), D-MARS (Israel) and Habitat Marte (Brazil).
Self-sustaining habitats are challenged to produce their own food that will be consumed on missions; generation of own energy; sewage treatment and reuse; collection, treatment and storage of rainwater.
The isolation characteristics can allow groups of people who share the coexistence in these places to be more protected from external biological threats and better able to survive in a quarantined condition.
Habitat Marte was originally conceived as an infrastructure that presents conditions to function according to the characteristic of self-sustainability and presents results that guide the functioning in space habitats and in isolated regions of the planet.
A current challenge for Habitat Marte is to increase the controlled area of food production. With the use of the aquaponics system there is the possibility of greater productivity in a limited physical space.
There is no information about another habitat that works according to the characteristics of self-sustainability in Brazil. Despite the relevance of the project, there is a need for greater support that started its activities two years ago. The project is maintained by Professor Julio Rezende, Department of Industrial Engineering at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte - UFRN.
Learning that occurs from the functioning of Habitat Marte can guide to prepare for the threat of coronavirus, as well as other virulent and contagious respiratory diseases that may endanger human health. More information about the missions and the Habitat Marte can be found at www.HabitatMarte.com. Briefly We will share the Protocol to combat coronavirus contamination in Habitat Marte and the policy of isolation.