Use of Photobioreactors in Regenerative Life Support Systems for Human Space Exploration

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Use of Photobioreactors in Regenerative Life Support Systems for Human Space Exploration. / Fahrion, Jana; Mastroleo, Felice; Gilles, Dussap; Leys, Natalie.

In: Frontiers in Microbiology, Vol. 12, 699525, 29.06.2021, p. 1-14.

Research output: Contribution to journalSpecial issuepeer-review

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@article{35c96ddd7362440eb50df3f4763605b0,
title = "Use of Photobioreactors in Regenerative Life Support Systems for Human Space Exploration",
abstract = "There are still many challenges to overcome for human space exploration beyond low Earth orbit (LEO) (e.g., to the Moon) and for long-term missions (e.g., to Mars). One of thebiggest problems is the reliable air, water and food supply for the crew. Bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) aim to overcome these challenges using bioreactors forwaste treatment, air and water revitalization as well as food production. In this review we focus on the microbial photosynthetic bioprocess and photobioreactors in space,which allow removal of toxic carbon dioxide (CO2) and production of oxygen (O2) and edible biomass. This paper gives an overview of the conducted space experimentsin LEO with photobioreactors and the precursor work (on ground and in space) for BLSS projects over the last 30 years. We discuss the different hardware approaches aswell as the organisms tested for these bioreactors. Even though a lot of experiments showed successful biological air revitalization on ground, the transfer to the spaceenvironment is far from trivial. For example, gas-liquid transfer phenomena are different under microgravity conditions which inevitably can affect the cultivation process andthe oxygen production. In this review, we also highlight the missing expertise in this research field to pave the way for future space photobioreactor development and wepoint to future experiments needed to master the challenge of a fully functional BLSS.",
keywords = "Space exploration, Bioregenerative life support systems, Microalgae, Photobioreactors, Air revitalization, Cyanobacteria",
author = "Jana Fahrion and Felice Mastroleo and Dussap Gilles and Natalie Leys",
note = "Score=10",
year = "2021",
month = jun,
day = "29",
doi = "10.3389/fmicb.2021.699525",
language = "English",
volume = "12",
pages = "1--14",
journal = "Frontiers in Microbiology",
issn = "1664-302X",
publisher = "Frontiers",

}

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Use of Photobioreactors in Regenerative Life Support Systems for Human Space Exploration

AU - Fahrion, Jana

AU - Mastroleo, Felice

AU - Gilles, Dussap

AU - Leys, Natalie

N1 - Score=10

PY - 2021/6/29

Y1 - 2021/6/29

N2 - There are still many challenges to overcome for human space exploration beyond low Earth orbit (LEO) (e.g., to the Moon) and for long-term missions (e.g., to Mars). One of thebiggest problems is the reliable air, water and food supply for the crew. Bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) aim to overcome these challenges using bioreactors forwaste treatment, air and water revitalization as well as food production. In this review we focus on the microbial photosynthetic bioprocess and photobioreactors in space,which allow removal of toxic carbon dioxide (CO2) and production of oxygen (O2) and edible biomass. This paper gives an overview of the conducted space experimentsin LEO with photobioreactors and the precursor work (on ground and in space) for BLSS projects over the last 30 years. We discuss the different hardware approaches aswell as the organisms tested for these bioreactors. Even though a lot of experiments showed successful biological air revitalization on ground, the transfer to the spaceenvironment is far from trivial. For example, gas-liquid transfer phenomena are different under microgravity conditions which inevitably can affect the cultivation process andthe oxygen production. In this review, we also highlight the missing expertise in this research field to pave the way for future space photobioreactor development and wepoint to future experiments needed to master the challenge of a fully functional BLSS.

AB - There are still many challenges to overcome for human space exploration beyond low Earth orbit (LEO) (e.g., to the Moon) and for long-term missions (e.g., to Mars). One of thebiggest problems is the reliable air, water and food supply for the crew. Bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) aim to overcome these challenges using bioreactors forwaste treatment, air and water revitalization as well as food production. In this review we focus on the microbial photosynthetic bioprocess and photobioreactors in space,which allow removal of toxic carbon dioxide (CO2) and production of oxygen (O2) and edible biomass. This paper gives an overview of the conducted space experimentsin LEO with photobioreactors and the precursor work (on ground and in space) for BLSS projects over the last 30 years. We discuss the different hardware approaches aswell as the organisms tested for these bioreactors. Even though a lot of experiments showed successful biological air revitalization on ground, the transfer to the spaceenvironment is far from trivial. For example, gas-liquid transfer phenomena are different under microgravity conditions which inevitably can affect the cultivation process andthe oxygen production. In this review, we also highlight the missing expertise in this research field to pave the way for future space photobioreactor development and wepoint to future experiments needed to master the challenge of a fully functional BLSS.

KW - Space exploration

KW - Bioregenerative life support systems

KW - Microalgae

KW - Photobioreactors

KW - Air revitalization

KW - Cyanobacteria

UR - https://ecm.sckcen.be/OTCS/llisapi.dll/overview/44899012

U2 - 10.3389/fmicb.2021.699525

DO - 10.3389/fmicb.2021.699525

M3 - Special issue

VL - 12

SP - 1

EP - 14

JO - Frontiers in Microbiology

JF - Frontiers in Microbiology

SN - 1664-302X

M1 - 699525

ER -

ID: 7152801