‘NASA seeks ideas to convert CO2 into useful compounds’

Opportunity-Battery

Opportunity-Battery

If you are in need of a large injection of funds, you can always put your white coat on and work something out for NASA in their newly-announced CO2 Conversion Challenge. As NASA wants that Mars astronauts should produce their materials on the planet itself, it's CO2 Conversion Challenge will help come up with ideas on how to turn CO2 into molecules that can be used to produce all manner of things.

"Enabling sustained human life on another planet will require a great deal of resources and we can not possibly bring everything we will need", Monsi Roman, Centennial Challenges program manager said in a press release. "Human existence enhance and habitation programs will treat wastewater to produce drinking water, enhance oxygen from CO2, convert stable wastes to useable merchandise, grow food, and specially originate instruments and packaging to enable reuse in alternate styles".

Carbon and oxygen are the molecular building blocks of sugars. "We have to get creative", said Monsi Roman, program manager of NASA's Centennial Challenges program. "Help us discover ways to develop novel synthesis technologies that use carbon dioxide (CO2) as the sole carbon source to generate molecules that can be used to manufacture a variety of products, including "substrates" for use in microbial bioreactors".

The planet Mars is shown May 12, 2016 in this NASA Hubble Space Telescope view when it was 50 million miles from Earth.

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The contest is divided into two stages. However, scientists say this approach would be hard to replicate in space because of limited resources, such as energy and water.

"Energy rich sugars are preferred microbial energy sources composed of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atom", states a press release disseminated on August 30. The first is the submission phase, where in individuals and teams will share their designs as well as detailed outlines explaining their physical-chemical process for turning Carbon dioxide into glucose.

Each plan will be reviewed by experts, and the agency revealed that they will award up to $250,000 for each top five teams or individuals in the first phase. After a team passes in the second phase of the CO2 Conversion Challenge, they will need to demonstrate and build their solutions.

The registration for the competition is open now, but competitors have time till January 24, 2019 to sign up and February 28 to submit their entries.

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