09 Mar Italian Design Day 2022
Lessons learned from Space Food Production Systems for improved Food Security on Earth!
Humanity is evolving towards a multi-planetary future. One of the main challenges in human space exploration is sustainability, since long duration missions on other planetary bodies will require a high level of autonomy from planet Earth and the possibility to retrieve all fundamental life resources.
The need for efficient use of volume, water, and other inputs for producing food could enable technologies with reduced impact on the resources needed for food production here on Earth, especially in extreme environments and resource-scarce regions. In addition to crops production, there are other advanced food systems that warrant exploration as they can also potentially address some of the challenges of terrestrial and space-based food systems.
The Space Meal Solution is a food production strategy, designed in partnership between COESIA S.p.A. and Pastificio RANA S.p.A., that identifies hydroponics and aeroponics systems as source to produce the ingredients for customized, balanced, nutritious, and palatable meals based on Mediterranean diet.
The food processing system is based on automated and integrated engineered solutions focusing on automation, from blending to cooking, with the goal to easily produce space meals through the Engineered Space Kitchen. The crops processing, the meal preparation and preservation are designed to minimize time, water and energy consumption and optimize human centered design for the crew by building a collaborative environment that combines assessed and innovative food processing and cooking technologies.
Indeed, designing new space food systems, while preserving and enhancing our culinary arts, solves for the scarcity of resources and sustainability on our planet a wonderful spaceship traveling across the universe.