Location

University of Utah

Start Date

12-6-1996 10:45 AM

Description

A capillary-driven root module design for growing plants in microgravity is presented. Matrix-based root modules have been developed for conditions of microgravity which require active pumping or an elaborate control system to operate. The capillary-driven system is passive and relies on root uptake to develop the necessary gradient within the media to operate the liquid control valve. A collapsible reservoir supplies water to a porous membrane which maintains the system continuity. Porous membranes facilitate matric potential control and should be matched to the media and operating system limits. Membrane pore size is a key element of the capacity of the system suction. The media particle size should match the system operating limits to maintain adequate air-filled porosity and fluid conductivity.

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Jun 12th, 10:45 AM

Capillary-Driven Root Module Design for Microgravity

University of Utah

A capillary-driven root module design for growing plants in microgravity is presented. Matrix-based root modules have been developed for conditions of microgravity which require active pumping or an elaborate control system to operate. The capillary-driven system is passive and relies on root uptake to develop the necessary gradient within the media to operate the liquid control valve. A collapsible reservoir supplies water to a porous membrane which maintains the system continuity. Porous membranes facilitate matric potential control and should be matched to the media and operating system limits. Membrane pore size is a key element of the capacity of the system suction. The media particle size should match the system operating limits to maintain adequate air-filled porosity and fluid conductivity.