Experts from the University of Manchester have developed a new type of space concrete, made from alien dust, potato starch and salt.
More than 50 years after the first person set foot on the Moon, humanity is preparing for the next big steps in space exploration. The Moon, then Mars, will be the first destinations where human settlements will be established.
Make StarCrete concrete from alien dust, potato starch and salt.
The University of Manchester research team made StarCrete concrete from alien dust, potato starch and salt. (Photo: Aled Roberts)
Since it is impossible to quickly return to Earth for deep space missions, it is important to take advantage of what is available there. Transporting materials from Earth would be extremely expensive for space agencies.
To aid construction on other celestial bodies, a group of experts from the University of Manchester developed StarCrete – a new type of “space concrete” made from extraterrestrial dust, potato starch and salti, Interesting Engineering reported on March 17. New research published in the journal Open Engineering.
In the study, scientists demonstrated that when mixed with simulated Martian dust, potato starch acts as a binder. The resulting material is twice as strong as ordinary concrete and can be used for extraterrestrial construction.
StarCrete has a compressive strength of 72 megapascals (MPa), While normal concrete has a compressive strength of 32 MPa. When tested mixed with lunar dust, StarCrete outperformed with a figure of 91 MPa.
According to calculations, a 25 kg bag of dried potatoes contains enough starch to produce almost half a tonne of StarCrete, the equivalent of 213 bricks. The research team also discovered, magnesium chloride salt – exists on Mars – and astronaut tears can help increase the durability of this material.
Previously, they had experimented with using human blood and urine as adhesives. However, this is not practical on a large scale and astronauts’ health may be at risk in a harsh space environment.
“We will produce starch to make food for astronauts, so using starch as a binder is more reasonable than human blood. In addition, current construction technologies still need many years of development and require large power and heavy processing equipment. All of these ” “said Dr Aled Roberts of the University of Manchester, a member of the research team.
StarCrete could also provide a more environmentally friendly alternative to traditional concrete used on Earth. Cement and concrete production represents around 8% of global CO2 emissions. After completing this research, the expert team will continue testing to increase the durability of StarCrete for future use.
Article source: Zing
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Experts from the University of Manchester have developed a new type of pharmaceutical space concrete. Made from alien dust, potato starch and salt. That…