With an aim to study the development of organisms on the lunar surface, China is planning to send mini-ecosystems comprising of potato seeds and silkworm eggs to the Moon next year.
According to the announcement made by the Global Space Exploration Conference, the mini-ecosystem weighing 3-kilogramme that was developed by research teams led by Chongqing University in China, will be sent to the Moon by the Chang’e 4 scheduled to launch in 2018.
"Our mission is to prepare for future moon landings and possible human inhabitants. We will livestream the development of plants and insects on lunar surface to the whole world", said Xie Gengxin, chief designer on the project.
According to the reports, Zhang Yuanxun, who designed the ecosystem stated that an 18-centimetre-tall cylinder will carry potato seeds and silkworm eggs to be incubated. The silkworms will hatch and create carbon dioxide, while the potato p1lants will generate oxygen.
Yang Liwei, deputy director general of China Manned Space Agency and the country’s first astronaut asserted that it will not take long for the project to get official approval and funding.