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Talk by Dr Rosa Santomartino, Postdoctoral Research Associate in Microbial Astrobiology at The University of Edinburgh.

Microorganisms such as bacteria are everywhere on Earth’s biosphere, including the human body, and will necessarily follow humans on their journey during space exploration. As they play many important roles in biological processes on Earth, they will be crucial in space. For instance, microorganisms will be essential components of extraterrestrial life support systems. Possible applications include the extraction of useful elements from extraterrestrial rocks, an industrial process called biomining, and soil formation. During this meeting, we will talk about how microorganisms could help us in the establishment of extraterrestrial human settlements, with a particular focus on biomining. I will show you the results from the first space biomining experiment, BioRock, that we performed on the International Space Station in summer 2019, and we will talk about future microbiological applications in space.

Visitors always welcome to watch live on our YouTube channel.

Image Credit: UK Centre for Astrobiology/University of Edinburgh