Plants in space

Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2002 Jun;5(3):258-63. doi: 10.1016/s1369-5266(02)00254-6.


Virtually all scenarios for the long-term habitation of spacecraft and other extraterrestrial structures involve plants as important parts of the contained environment that would support humans. Recent experiments have identified several effects of spaceflight on plants that will need to be more fully understood before plant-based life support can become a reality. The International Space Station (ISS) is the focus for the newest phase of space-based research, which should solve some of the mysteries of how spaceflight affects plant growth. Research carried out on the ISS and in the proposed terrestrial facility for Advanced Life Support testing will bring the requirements for establishing extraterrestrial plant-based life support systems into clearer focus.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological / physiology
  • Ecological Systems, Closed*
  • Extraterrestrial Environment*
  • Humans
  • Plant Development*
  • Space Flight*