UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa

Elijah Miller
Elijah Miller

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Human waste may one day be a valuable resource for astronauts on deep-space missions. Now, a Penn State research team has shown that it is possible to rapidly break down solid and liquid waste to grow food with a series of microbial reactors, while simultaneously minimizing pathogen growth.

"We envisioned and tested the concept of simultaneously treating astronauts' waste with microbes while producing a biomass that is edible either directly or indirectly depending on safety concerns," said Christopher House, professor of geosciences, Penn State. "It's a little strange, but the concept would be a little bit like Marmite or Vegemite where you're eating a smear of 'microbial goo.'"

The researchers' study addresses multiple challenges facing deep-space missions to Mars or beyond, which would likely take months or years. Bringing enough food from Earth takes up volume and increases the mass and fuel cost of the spacecraft, while growing food in route using hydroponic or other methods would be an energy- and water-intensive process that takes up valuable room.

To test their idea, the researchers used an artificial solid and liquid waste that's commonly used in waste management tests. They created an enclosed, cylindrical system, four feet long by four inches in diameter, in which select microbes came into contact with the waste. The microbes broke down waste using anaerobic digestion, a process similar to the way humans digest food.

"Anaerobic digestion is something we use frequently on Earth for treating waste," said House. "It's an efficient way of getting mass treated and recycled. What was novel about our work was taking the nutrients out of that stream and intentionally putting them into a microbial reactor to grow food."

The team found that methane was readily produced during anaerobic digestion of human waste and could be used to grow a different microbe, Methylococcus capsulatus, which is used as animal feed today. The team concluded that such microbial growth could be used to produce a nutritious food for deep space flight. They reported in Life Sciences in Space Research that they grew M. capsulatus that was 52 percent protein and 36 percent fats, making it a potential source of nutrition for astronauts.

Because pathogens are also a concern with growing microbes in an enclosed, humid space, the team studied ways to grow microbes in either an alkaline environment or a high-heat environment. They raised the system's pH to 11 and were surprised to find a strain of the bacteria Halomonas desiderata that could thrive. The team found this bacteria to be 15 percent protein and 7 percent fats. At 158 degrees Fahrenheit, which kills most pathogens, they grew the edible Thermus aquaticus, which consisted of 61 percent protein and 16 percent fats.

"We also explored dramatic changes to how much waste was produced, for example, if the spacecraft had a larger load than usual, and the system accommodated that well," said House.

The team's compact design drew inspiration from aquariums, which use a fixed-film filter to treat fish waste. These filters use a specially designed, bacteria-covered film material with high surface area.

"We used materials from the commercial aquarium industry but adapted them for methane production," said House. "On the surface of the material are microbes that take solid waste from the stream and convert it to fatty acids, which are converted to methane gas by a different set of microbes on the same surface."

The team removed 49 to 59 percent of solids in 13 hours during their test. This is much faster than existing waste management treatment, which can take several days. House said their system is not ready for application yet — this initial study explored the various components in isolation and not a fully integrated system.

"Each component is quite robust and fast and breaks down waste quickly," said House. "That's why this might have potential for future space flight. It's faster than growing tomatoes or potatoes."

Today, astronauts aboard the International Space Station recycle a portion of water from urine, but the process is energy intensive, said House. Solid waste management has been a bigger hurdle. This currently is ejected into the Earth's atmosphere where it burns up.

"Imagine if someone were to fine-tune our system so that you could get 85 percent of the carbon and nitrogen back from waste into protein without having to use hydroponics or artificial light," said House. "That would be a fantastic development for deep-space travel."

Two additional researchers collaborated on this work: Lisa Steinberg, postdoctoral astrobiology researcher at Penn State at the time of the study, now a science lab supervisor at Delaware County Community College; and Rachel Kronyak, former Penn State undergraduate geosciences student, now a graduate student at the University of Tennessee.

All urls found in this thread:

news.psu.edu/story/502406/2018/01/25/microbes-may-help-astronauts-transform-human-waste-food

Nathaniel Carter
Nathaniel Carter

sage

Dylan Sullivan
Dylan Sullivan

Interesting, but
no link
sage

Jayden Gonzalez
Jayden Gonzalez

You can not eat food that has received its nutrition from your shit. It doesn't matter what fuckin microbe you "render" it with. If the ingredients are:

your shit
a microbe
bon apetit

It is literally nothing more than your waste matter, reconstituted.

n-no the microbe breaks it down and produces x, y and z

Yes, x y and z produced from your shit. This could be a great idea.. in "theory" it should be absolutely "fine". But the problem with the theory is it is predicated on kiked up science.

For example. The Gene Pool. Reproduction is an equation. Organism A + Organism B = Organism C. In order for Organism A to have the most satisfactory outcome it must reproduce with an Organism B where B= Haplogroup (x:xn) + (F2+). Fn is used in tracing heritage of organisms, F0 = 'wild' specimen and each subsequent F=an additional generation removed from 'wild' specimen

In other words, to produce satisfactory offspring an organism must breed with another organism within the subset of 'its kind' and that is as far away from being a direct relative as possible, but 2 deviations are sufficient. In theory if an organism breeds and that offspring mates with a different organism, and the subsequent offspring breeds with another different organism that third organism could be reproduced with by the first with minimal risk of inbreeding, as long as such a thing didnt become a trend.

Same goes with food. You dont breed with what is made from what comes out of you and you dont eat from what is made of what comes out of you. There's a reason that third worlders that use human shit for fertilizer experience (((completely baffling cholera epidemics)))

Nicholas Perez
Nicholas Perez

What about using it for food not for us, but livestock or vegetation?

Chase Martin
Chase Martin

Wait I am blind and didn't read the last sentence because I suck cocks.

Adrian Rodriguez
Adrian Rodriguez

news.psu.edu/story/502406/2018/01/25/microbes-may-help-astronauts-transform-human-waste-food

Wyatt Parker
Wyatt Parker

No.11196233

Food goes in, poop comes out. Can't explain that.

Checkmate, atheists!

Alexander Howard
Alexander Howard

Thats not how you link you reddit fuck.

Colton Allen
Colton Allen

so after the intense and rigorous (mentally, physically, career oriented) requirements for becoming an astronaut, these doctors and notable scientists get the blessing of eating shit. Lo how far we have ascended

Aiden Butler
Aiden Butler

Who is doing the laughing now my friends?

Lucas Nguyen
Lucas Nguyen

little bit like Marmite or Vegemite where you're eating a smear of 'microbial goo.'"
While they probably all taste like shit, only one is an actual smear of shit.

Julian Sullivan
Julian Sullivan

You can not eat food that has received its nutrition from your shit. It doesn't matter what fuckin microbe you "render" it with.
That's bullshit and you know it.

sage for streetshitter 2020 supoo-power thread

Jackson Brown
Jackson Brown

Where are the elements and minerals you need once your body filters it out of the pooploop?

Wyatt Scott
Wyatt Scott

Why is it so fucking hard for you morons to include a link in the OP

Gavin Young
Gavin Young

world pooper power by 2020 gets memed into reality

Nathan Miller
Nathan Miller

Just dairy doo?

Justin Flores
Justin Flores

Shitposting my friend.

Jacob Long
Jacob Long

the human body can split atoms
minerals are single use
no chemical reaction can be reversed through biological processes
Septic systems have been used to treat human waste for decades on farms. Vegetable gardens perform well when planted above drainage tiles.
The same tech was proposed for waste treatment during deep space missions in the 90's.
The same tech is being used right now in aquaponics and composting toilets.

Reported for sub-100 IQ

Owen Gutierrez
Owen Gutierrez

I don't think anyone would be put on the poo-goo diet exclusively; you'd become malnourished within days. Poo-goo would be used as edible filler for meals as a storage optimisation. If, for example, it were found one could survive for an extended period on a ratio of 1:1 poo-goo to real food, you could safely cut the food storage by half, per man. For a long-range flight and/or large crew, that's an enormous reduction in storage.

Jordan Green
Jordan Green

An alien is going to find the craft adrift in space wondering just what the fuck was going on when they discover the logs and the bodies of the monkeys that were eating their own shit. Will they be amused or appalled that they even made it into space?

Michael Russell
Michael Russell

Bullshit. You're basing this on a poor understanding of thermodynamics and biology. Human waste being digested by microbes means it is converted. The microbes do the work of converting it into something useful, because we feed them energy to do so.

As to your statement about breeding, you obviously have only a basic understanding of biology and population genetics. Quit throwing around irrelevant jargon to try and justify bad reasoning. It's what Star Trek was famous for.

completely baffling cholera epidemics
Bacteria are in everything, including pathogens. It's all about minimizing them, or eradicating them. The reason third worlders do so poorly is that they have lax standards and low technological development.

This is literally about minimizing the space needed to have long-duration space travel, and eventually colonization. We can't be so extravagant as to transport cows and a whole host of agricultural supplies with us into space. Not initially.

We will need to be minimalistic, in frankly disturbing ways to set the path for space colonization.

William Hernandez
William Hernandez

Penn State has to be shut down permanently. Fucking pedo scat fags.

Isaiah Young
Isaiah Young

totally unnecessary if we get rid of the kikes.

Elijah Reed
Elijah Reed

RECYCLED GOYCHOW FOR THE GOYIM

Disable AdBlock to view this page

Disable AdBlock to view this page

Confirm your age

This website may contain content of an adult nature. If you are under the age of 18, if such content offends you or if it is illegal to view such content in your community, please EXIT.

Enter Exit

About Privacy

We use cookies to personalize content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyze our traffic. We also share information about your use of our site with our advertising and analytics partners.

Accept Exit