Biological component of life support systems for a crew in long-duration space expeditions
Sychev, Vladimir N., et al. (2008). "Biological component of life support systems for a crew in long-duration space expeditions." Acta Astronautica 63 7–10: 1119-1125
Creation of effective life support systems (LSSs) is one of the main tasks of medico-biological support of long-duration space flight. Principles of development of such an LSS will be defined on the basis of number of parameters, including mass-overall and energetic limitations of interplanetary spacecraft, duration of expedition and crew size. It is obvious that including biological subsystems in LSS of long-duration interplanetary space flights will help to form a full-fledged environment for humans in the spacecraft. It would be an appropriate solution for long-term biological needs of humans and important for elimination of possible negative consequences of their long stay under artificial (abiogenous) environment. Experiments with higher plants, conducted on board “MIR” orbital complex and Russian segment of ISS, showed that plant organisms are capable of long-duration normal growth, full development and reproduction without deviations under real space flight environment. These results allow us to assume that greenhouses are potential candidates to be a biological subsystem to be included in the LSS for interplanetary space flight. Inclusion of greenhouse equipment in the spacecrafts will require a number of corrective actions in functional schemes of the existing LSS, i.e. it will lead to redistribution of material streams inside an LSS and increase in functional load of authorized systems. Furthermore, involvement of greenhouse in an LSS of an interplanetary spacecraft requires a number of technical tasks to be cleared. In the present review, we discuss the constructive, technological and mass-transfer characteristics of greenhouse as a component part of the LSS for crews of long-term interplanetary missions, in particular, Mars expedition.