Space Stations

China Exoplanet Habitability and Ecosystem Space Experiment (CHEESE) On China’s Space Station (CSS)

By Keith Cowing
Status Report
July 31, 2023
Filed under , , , , ,
China Exoplanet Habitability and Ecosystem Space Experiment (CHEESE) On China’s Space Station (CSS)
The conceptual design of China Exoplanet Habitability and Ecosystem Space Experiment (CHEESE) on China space station (CSS).

The experiment of exo-ecosystem and the exploration of extraterrestrial habitability aims to explore the adaptation of terrestrial life in space conditions for the manned space program and the future interstellar migration, which shows great scientific significance and public interests.

By our knowledge the early life on Earth, archaea and extremophile have the ability to adapt to extreme environmental conditions and can potentially habitat in extraterrestrial environments. Here we proposed a design and framework for the experiment on exo-ecosystem and extraterrestrial habitability. The conceptual approach involves building an ecosystem based on archaea and extremophiles in a simulated extraterrestrial environment, with a focus on assessing the exobiological potential and adaptability of terrestrial life forms in such conditions through controlled experiments.

Specifically, we introduce the Chinese Exo-Ecosystem Space Experiment (CHEESE), which investigates the survivability and potential for sustained growth, reproduction, and ecological interactions of methanogens under simulated Mars and Moon environments using the China Space Station (CSS) as a platform. We highlight that the space station provides unique yet relatively comprehensive conditions for simulating extraterrestrial environments.

In conclusion, space experiments involving exo-ecosystems could pave the way for long-term human habitation in space, ensuring our ability to sustain colonies and settlements beyond Earth while minimizing our ecological impact on celestial bodies.

The roadmap of China Exoplanet Habitability and Ecosystem Space Experiment (CHEESE). CSS and GBL represent China’s Space Station and Ground-based Laboratory, respectively

The design and production of space experimental units (A), the design and production of
the packages (B) and the simulated mechanical experiments. Zhu Liu, Duo Cui, Siyao Yang

The mini-centrifuge equipment with centrifugal module and static module on ISS.

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Popular Physics (physics.pop-ph)
Cite as: arXiv:2307.15562 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2307.15562v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Zhu Liu
[v1] Fri, 28 Jul 2023 13:59:12 UTC (756 KB)

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) 🖖🏻