DARPA will use biological processes for resource limited environments with its Biomanufacturing: Survival, Utility, and Reliability beyond Earth (B-SURE) program.
DARPA wants to be make fuel, replacement parts or tools, and a wide range of other products. They could use fermentation equipment, feedstocks, and a freezer full of microbes that convert the feedstock into products on demand.
B-SURE will collect data on the microbial utilization of space-based alternative feedstocks, optimization of microbial growth in variable gravities, and mitigation strategies for identified effects of galactic cosmic radiation on microbial growth and bioproduction.
The 18-month effort involves three tracks to meet program goals.
Track 1 “Alternative Feedstock Utilization” will determine which alternative feedstocks can be consumed by host organisms and at what quantity and purity levels.
Track 2 “Variable Gravity” will identify the impact of variable gravity on cellular performance in the context of biomanufacturing parameters and how terrestrial analogs predict on-orbit molecule production.
Track 3 “Variable Radiation” will discover the effects of variable radiation on microbial molecule production. Program proposers may choose to respond to one or more tracks.
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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