SkyFarm: Feeding a Large Space Population

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M. Hempsell (2017), JBIS, 70, pp.3-11

Refcode: 2017.70.3
Keywords: Space colonies, Skyfarm, Space agriculture

Abstract:
Classical Space colony concepts have envisaged a completely closed life support system which includes all the food production being conducted on the colony. An alternative could be independent specialist food production facilities that then export food to many colonies. Such specialist facilities could be more efficient due to scale and a concentration of expertise. They could also increase the variety of Space colony diet, including branded foods. A concept design for a Skyfarm is outlined which is capable of producing 7,000 tonnes of food a day, sufficient to support 4 million people, although it is expected that in practice such a facility would provide part of the diet for a much larger population. With the assumptions of the study it is shown that the cost of food to the consumer would be around $40 per kilogramme.

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