NAI is sponsoring the workshop Cyanobacteria in the Lunar Environment" at NASA Ames Research Center from January 28-30, 2008. It will bring together microbiologists, planetary scientists, and experts in flight experiments and hardware to assess the value and feasibility of studying cyanobacteria in space environments. Cyanobacteria are of great interest as model microorganisms to space programs because of their antiquity on earth, metabolic diversity, resilience to adverse conditions, ability to efficiently produce oxygen and hydrogen, and the existence of advanced capabilities for their genetic manipulation. Furthermore, cyanobacteria have considerable potential value for in-situ resource utilization and life support technologies.
The workshop is aimed at generating a well-informed, systematic research program to address survival, acclimation, adaptation and utilization of cyanobacteria in space environments. Such a program will be planned within the context of current or nearfuture experimental and exploration capabilities using ground, satellite, and lunar platforms. For more information contact Andrew Pohorille (Andrew.Pohorille@nasa.gov).
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