ASGSB 2003 Annual Meeting Abstracts
EFFECTS OF ETHANOL ON THE GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT OF RADISHES.
Eraso2, and G.W. Stutte2. 1Dept. of
Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering,
Univ. of Arizona, Tucson.
2Dynamac Corporation, Kennedy Space Center, FL.
Radishes are a salad type crop that is being considered as a food source for
astronauts on short to medium duration spaceflight missions. The atmosphere
onboard spacecraft such as the International Space Station contains
volatile organic compounds (VOC) that may affect plant growth and development.
Ethanol and other alcohols are primary VOC contaminants. Microgravity
has also been observed to significantly affect plant growth and development.
The objective of this research is to determine the effects of ethanol on the
growth and development of Raphanus sativus L. cv. Cherry Belle, Cherry
Bomb, and Sora. The effects of ethanol exposure can then be differentiated
from the effects of microgravity. The radishes were grown in Oasis foam
substrate in closed controlled environment plant growth chambers and were
subjected to chronic exposure of three different concentrations of ethanol
through a closed gas exchange system. The growth and development of the
radishes was analyzed by measuring the biomass, root and shoot size,
chlorophyll content, chlorophyll fluorescence, and photosynthesis rate. High
concentrations of ethanol were observed to have significant effects on the
radishes growth and development.
(Supported by NASA’s 2003 Spaceflight and Life Sciences Training Program)
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