Motherboard has the story on the gardening robot and smart growing system being designed by a group of graduate students with the goal of getting freshly grown food available to astronauts during space travel and possibly for future colonies on Mars:
That’s where SPOT and ROGR come in: a smart growing chamber and gardening robot, respectively, currently being developed by a graduate team at the University of Colorado Boulder.
The goal is to be able to grow fresh fruits and vegetables in the space environment. Not only will that allow astronauts to get some variety in their diet, but it gives them access to living, green, growing life in what is otherwise a sterile, metal box. Astronauts have reported greatly enjoying previous experiments that gave them a chance to tend to plants in space and help something thrive.
Eventually, SPOT and ROGR could help establish greenhouses on Mars to provide sustainable, fresh produce for colonies on the red planet.
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