Advanced Plant Habitat (APH)

OVERVIEW

The Advanced Plant Habitat (APH). is a fully-automated plant growth facility that is used to conduct plant bioscience research aboard the International Space Station. While not built by Redwire, plant research campaigns in the NASA-owned APH are managed by the company through a multi-year Research Engineering and Mission Integration Services contract with the space agency.

The system requires minimal crew involvement to install the science, add water, and for other maintenance activities. It is a fully enclosed, closed-loop system with an environmentally controlled growth chamber. The plant habitat uses red, blue and green LED lights, and broad-spectrum white LED lights. The system contains more than 180 sensors, relaying real-time information, including temperature, oxygen content and moisture levels (in the air and soil, near the plant roots, and at the stem and leaf level). The large, enclosed chamber is designed to support commercial and fundamental plant research or other bioscience research aboard the space station for up to 135-day science investigations. The APH provides real-time data telemetry, remote commanding, and imagery to NASA and the Redwire experiment management team at the Kennedy Space Center.

TECHNICAL INFORMATION

General

  • Max. Shoot Height: 45 cm
  • Root Zone Height: 5 cm
  • Growth Area: 1,708 cm2
  • Growth Volume: 112,500 cm3

Light Provision

  • 0-1000 μmol m-2 s-1 Photosynthetic Photon Flux (PPF) in increments of 50 (internal PPF Sensor)
  • Red (630-660 nm), Blue (450±10 nm), Green (525±10 nm), Far Red (730 nm), White
  • Uniformity: ±15% (15 cm below light bank, 5 cm in from wall)

Relative Humidity (RH)

  • RH Controlled/Monitored: 50-86% (±5%)
  • RH Condensate Measured and Recycled

Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

  • CO2 Controlled/Monitored: 400-5000 ppm (±50 ppm)
  • Internal CO2 Sensor
  • CO2 Draw-Down Capability

Air Quality

  • Air Flow: Controlled between 0.3-1.5 m/s
  • Ethylene: Scrubbed to ≤ 25 ppb
  • Air Filtration
  • Air Sampling Ports

Water Quality

  • Water and Nutrient Delivery
  • Water Sampling Ports

Temperature

  • 18-30°C (±1°C)
  • Leaf Temperature Sensor

Root and Shoot Zone

  • Root Zone Moisture Level Controlled/Monitored
  • O2 Sensors in both Shoot & Root Zone

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