... and they _hate_ it!
Not very surprising, as long as you add the missing piece which is water
I disagree - Terran soil is much more than just rock dust and water.
They added the required nutrients as well. I don't mean to downplay the importance of basic science but what does this really prove?
It proves we can grow plants in the available regolith. Given the results of the experiment as shown in the article a not all obvious result that highlights some challenges. E.g. the plant growing in the Apollo 11 sample turned purple from all the stress, while plants in all moon samples grew slower and showed genetic stress markers. That alone should tell us that growing plants there isn't just adding water and nutrients.
Without reading the article I suspect the benefit is not needing to bring loads of earth soil on moon missions. Of course there’s also hydroponics but idk if it works for every possible plant. Having another option seems good.
Whole experiment is plain absurd. From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_soil#Mineralogy_and_comp...
> There are two profound differences in the chemistry of lunar regolith and dirt from terrestrial materials. The first is that the Moon is very dry. As a result, those minerals with water as part of their structure (mineral hydration) such as clay, mica, and amphiboles are absent from the Moon's surface.
> The second difference is that lunar regolith and crust are chemically reduced, rather than being significantly oxidized like the Earth's crust.
They added water and oxygen. Which undoes both of above. So they ended up with more or less aseptic earth dirt. And yeah, plants grow in that, duh.
And there will be lots of humanure to augment it all that they can produce on site. In fact it may become a scarce resource.
Exactly. We've all been there:
"It's just a one line change. I know I didn't really test it, but it's bloody obvious that it's going to work..."
Redoing a moon landing mission is a bit more expensive than a short outage at a SaaS company.
The article answers that several different ways.
It could read: Plants grown, despite being placed in lunar soil.