Scientists from the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru and Indian Space Research Organisation have developed a process to make bricks on the lunar surface for habitation.
“The process involves extracting lunar soil and using bacteria and guar beans to harden it (soil) into brick-like structures for habitation on the moon in the future,” a researcher of the city-based science institute told IANS on Monday.
These bricks will be use in making structure on moon’s surface for any possible future habitation on moon.
“It is really exciting because it brings two different fields — biology and mechanical engineering — together,” says Aloke Kumar, assistant professor in the department of mechanical engineering, IISc, one of the authors of two studies that were recently published.
The cost of sending one pound of material to outer space is about $10,000 or around Rs 7.5 lakh. The process developed by IISc and Isro team uses urea — which can be sourced from human urine — and lunar soil as raw materials for construction of brick like structure on the moon’s surface.
One bacteria called Sporosarcina pasteurii, produces calcium carbonate crystals through a metabolic pathway called the ureolytic cycle. It uses urea and calcium to form these crystal as byproduct.
“Living organisms have been involved in such mineral precipitation since the dawn of the Cambrian period, and modern science has now found a use for them,” says Aloke Kumar.
ISRO already in past conducted two Lunar mission called Chandrayaan-1 in 2008 and Chandrayaan-2 in 2019. ISRO future mars mission to moon is Chandrayaan-3, this time again scientists will try to land rover on Moon surface.