Lunar Greenhouse Outreach and Teaching Module Featured on TV, Radio

After spending most of 2012 on the road – with a stop at the San Diego County Fair in June and an installation at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, beginning in July – the Controlled Environment Agriculture Center’s Lunar Greenhouse Outreach and Teaching Module returned to Tucson in January.  Since its return, this traveling educational program has continued to attract attention in the media.

The module was profiled in a January 6 episode of “Arizona Highways Television.” College of Agriculture and Life Sciences students featured in the episode include Tyler Jensen, a microbiology major who maintains operations and grows plants in the module, and David Story and Polly Juang, graduate students working with Murat Kacira, associate professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, on such projects as module communications and solar energy electrical panels.

View a recording of this “Arizona Highways Television” episode on YouTube.

Gene Giacomelli, director of the Controlled Environment Agriculture Center, was also interviewed for “America’s Home Grown Veggie Show” in an hour-long episode airing on AM 1620 radio (Atlanta, Georgia) on January 12 and streamed live on the web. Host Kate Copsey interviewed Giacomelli about basic systems needs for controlled environment agriculture in both lunar and South Pole locations. What can experiments like the Lunar Greenhouse Outreach and Teaching Module teach home gardeners about container or greenhouse gardening?

An mp3 recording of the interview is available online.

The Lunar Greenhouse Outreach and Teaching Module is a mobile replica of the Lunar Greenhouse Lab, housed at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Controlled Environment Agriculture Center.

The module is a prototype of a self-contained, automated environment which has the potential to provide water, oxygen and one-half of the daily amount of food needed for one astronaut to survive. Approximately 18-by-7 feet, the cylindrical lunar greenhouse is full of plant life that grows using hydroponics (in nutrient-rich water, without soil) giving visitors the opportunity to visualize first-hand how humans might be able to grow food on the moon.

Registration is now open for the Controlled Environment Agriculture Center's spring 2013 short course on greenhouse crop production and engineering design.

Date released: 
Jan 29 2013
Contact: 
Gene Giacomelli