Space plants growing

The future of vertical farms and space exploration

For the ORION Space Generation Foundation and its Grow Stars Institute, the growing of different leafy vegetables, the production of seedlings and the growing of strawberries represent an important trend that can add a new dimension not only to space travel but also to the efficiency and sustainability of farming on Earth.

Located in the heart of Budapest, the vertical farm is a multi-site Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) facility with professional R&D and innovation staff, where production takes place in 5 separate, fully individually controllable vertical farm rooms and 3 small-scale growing cabinets.

With the joint work of the ORION Foundation and Grow Stars Institute, the role of the vertical farm goes beyond traditional plant production. The innovative cultivation of space plants in the life of the Foundation not only serves to serve the diversification of food sources, but also helps astronauts to have access to healthy and nutritious food during long-duration space missions. The Foundation’s commitment to research, innovation and sustainability is intertwined with its visionary goals for space plants. Inspired by space exploration, Grow Stars Institute not only focuses on growing plants, but also uses the knowledge and technologies gained to improve farming on Earth, contributing to solving the global challenges of sustainable food production.

A new era of development

So by working together, Space plants are not only the food of the future, but also the start of a new era where humanity can pioneer both space exploration and sustainability on Earth.

The timeliness of vertical farms is driven by the global challenges facing humanity, such as overpopulation, limited arable land, soil quality deficits and the effects of climate change. Vertical farms are automated systems developed in response to these challenges, enabling continuous plant production 24/7. Chemical-free production and strict technological standards mean that produce can be consumed without washing, resulting in food-quality products.

Plants can be grown with adjustable nutritional values, for example to increase the vitamin C content of lettuces or to reduce water requirements by up to 95% compared to conventional plants, which can be critical for longer space missions and space exploration.

In addition, the cultivation of space plants poses various challenges for researchers. Space stations environmental factors, such as weightlessness, limited water resources and plant protection problems, require new approaches. The use of closed systems, such as the hydroponics used in Grow Stars Institute, allows efficient plant cultivation.

Space plants not only provide nutrition for astronauts, they also provide psychological and mental support during long space missions. Various aspects of crop production on the International Space Station, such as NASA’s VEGGIE project, optimisation of nutrient cycles, improvement of air filtration and air quality, and research objectives, all contribute to the complex picture of space plant production.

Our commitment to growing space plants not only serves our own development and research, but also connects us on a common path of innovation and creative collaboration. It is in this spirit that we are pleased to present our unique partnership with Budapest Makery, another important milestone in the spiritual and technological strengthening of our project.

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Taste the future