Sci entists from the Institute of Hydrobiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences presented an ambitious project with which they hope to convert the waste and sandy soil of Mars into fertile soil. Find out what it is and how viable your idea is.
To achieve its goal, Chinese researchers propose using microalgae. Sputnik spoke with Russian and Chinese scientists to understand how viable this project is.
The director of the Institute of Earth Sciences at the Tyumen State University, Vitali Joroshavin, believes that it is possible to make any type of soil fertile.
"The chemical composition of the Martian soil does not differ much from that of the Earth, the only thing it does not have are the organic substances, which the Chinese plan to reproduce with the help of microalgae," he explained.
For his part, the director of the Institute of Ecological Agriculture of the province of Yunnan, Na Zhongyuan, believes that it is extremely difficult to realize this idea in the current stage of exploration of Mars.
The oxidation of the atmosphere in whose process the water is divided into the key components, was the main factor that marked the appearance of favorable conditions for life on Earth. Zhongyuan says that without a rusty environment it is impossible to create a fertile soil.
"An organism can develop only if oxidation-reduction reactions occur, which is why water is important, only in this way is it possible to preserve the conditions in which organisms can develop and exist (...)," he stressed.
Joroshavin shares the opinion of his Chinese colleague. According to the Russian scientist, microalgae will hardly be able to survive in the unprotected Martian environment.
"The abrupt temperature differences between day and night, the absence of water, the radiation, the active movement of the ground caused by the movement of the air masses, if the conditions are created capable of protecting a terrain of Mars from the mentioned factors, it will be possible to provide fertility to the Martian soil, "he concluded.
According to Joroshavin, only an artificial dome or an underground infrastructure are able to protect an extension of land on Mars.