||This article needs attention from an expert in Microbiology. (February 2009)|
The acronym MELiSSA means 'Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative' and is a development program of a microbiological and horticultural plant based ecosystem. The system is planned to be used for regenerative life support systems for long-term space missions to lunar bases or flights to Mars.
The basis of MELiSSA is the treatment, recovery and recycling of edible biomass, water and oxygen from human waste and carbon dioxide. The scale and advanced stage of technologies that have been developed to overcome the numerous technical challenges is substantial. Many of these solutions directly impact and present solutions to environmental issues on earth. Examples include: optimized water treatment systems, advanced sewage systems, recycling of waste, controlled crop growth, etc.
The MELiSSA Project is managed by the ESA ESTEC Thermal and Environmental Control Section (TEC-MCT). The project is based on a collaborative development program with nine partners and a number of supporting sub-contractors. The organisations partnering ESA in MELiSSA Memorandum Of Understanding are:
- the SCK•CEN research centre in Mol, Belgium;
- VITO technology centre also in Mol;
- Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona in Barcelona, Spain;
- University of Mons, Belgium;
- the University of Guelph in Guelph, Canada;
- University Blaise Pascal in Clermont-Ferrand, France;
- SHERPA engineering in Paris, France;
- IPStar B.V. in the Netherlands.
Currently, there are several technologies featured and their applications can be classified into:
- Water Recycling Technology (grey, yellow and black water)
- Waste and Fiber Degradation Technology
- Air Regeneration Technology
- Biological Sensory Technology
The compilation of MELiSSA technologies remains a work in progress. As research and development continues, more technologies will become available also for commercial application.
Generally speaking all MELISSA technologies are considered to be in the cleantech area and can be applied for instance in water treatment plants, urine treatment units, lifestock farms (manure processing) and airplanes.
IPStar BV is responsible for technology transfer activities related to the MELiSSA consortium.[clarification needed]
|This space- or spaceflight-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|