The first "space" vegetables have been grown in the "SVET" greenhouse using controlled environmental conditions

Acta Astronaut. 1993 Aug;29(8):639-44. doi: 10.1016/0094-5765(93)90082-8.


The paper describes the "SVET" project--a new generation of space greenhouse with small dimensions. Through the use of a minicomputer, "SVET" is fully capable of automatically operating and controlling environmental systems for higher plant growth. A number of preliminary studies have shown the radish and cabbage to be potentially important crops for CELSS (Closed Environmental Life Support System). The "SVET" space greenhouse was mounted on the "CRYSTAL" technological module docked to the Mir orbital space station on 10 June 1990. Soviet cosmonauts Balandin and Solovyov started the first experiments with the greenhouse on 15 June 1990. Preliminary results of seed cultivation over an initial 54-day period in "SVET" are presented. Morphometrical characteristics of plants brought back to Earth are given. Alteration in plant characteristics, such as growth and developmental changes, or morphological contents were noted. A crop of radish plants was harvested under microgravity conditions. Characteristics of plant environmental control parameters and an estimation of functional properties of control and regulation systems of the "SVET" greenhouse in space flight as received via telemetry data is reported.

MeSH terms

  • Brassica / growth & development*
  • Ecological Systems, Closed*
  • Environment, Controlled*
  • Equipment Design
  • Germination
  • Life Support Systems / instrumentation*
  • Seeds / growth & development
  • Space Flight / instrumentation*
  • Systems Integration
  • Water Supply
  • Weightlessness*