Advanced Plant Habitat (Plant Habitat) - 11.29.17

Summary | Overview | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
The Advanced Plant Habitat Facility (Plant Habitat) is a fully automated facility that is used to conduct plant bioscience research on the International Space Station (ISS). It occupies the lower half of the EXpedite the PRocessing of Experiments to Space Station (EXPRESS) rack and two International Subrack Interface Standard (ISIS) drawers, providing a large, enclosed, environmentally controlled chamber.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by Bryan G. Onate, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Facility Details

OpNom: Plant Habitat

Facility Manager(s)
Bryan G. Onate, Kennedy Space Center, FL, United States

Facility Representative(s)
Nicole Dufour, Kennedy Space Center, FL, United States

NASA Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, FL, United States
Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, WI, United States

Sponsoring Space Agency
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Sponsoring Organization
NASA Research Office - Space Life and Physical Sciences (NASA Research-SLPS)

ISS Expedition Duration
April 2017 - February 2018

Expeditions Assigned

Previous Missions
This is the first mission for the Plant Habitat.


  • Available for Launch
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    Facility Description

    Facility Overview

    The Advanced Plant Habitat (Plant Habitat) provides a large, enclosed, environmentally controlled chamber designed to support commercial and fundamental plant research or other bioscience research onboard the International Space Station (ISS) for at least one year of continuous operation without maintenance. It is configured as a quad-locker payload to be mounted in a standard EXpedite the PRocessing of Experiments to Space Station (EXPRESS) rack. The Plant Habitat integrates proven microgravity plant growth technologies with newly developed fault tolerance and recovery technology to increase overall efficiency, reliability, and robustness. In addition, the Plant Habitat provides single-level contained, embedded glove ports for the crew's use when sampling plant materials or conducting experiments. The design is based on an open architecture concept to allow critical subsystems to be removed and replaced onboard the ISS.
    The Plant Habitat growing space accommodates a shoot area of 1708 cm2, a shoot height of 43 cm, a root area of 1853 cm2, and a root height of 5 cm. The Plant Habitat has a method-active temperature control that uses thermoelectric coolers with a range of +18 to +30 °C and an accuracy of ±0.5 °C from the set point; temperature is uniform within ±1 °C in the plant canopy plane. Humidity is in the range of 50 to 90 percent relative humidity (RH) and is accurate within ±3 percent RH from the set point and uniform within ±5 percent RH in the plant canopy plane.  Also in the shoot zone, Plant Habitat provides sensor capability to measure light levels in the photosythetically active and the red/far red range and the ability to measure the surface temperature of a plant canopy or other sample surface.  In the root zone, the standard Plant Habitat science platform provides a variety of sensing capabilities that include:  root zone temperature, moisture levels and oxygen content.
    The Plant Habitat uses high-intensity red (0-600 µmol m-2 s-1 at 630-660 nm ±10 nm), blue (0-400 µmol m-2 s-1 at 400-500 nm ±10 nm), green (0-100 µmol m-2 s-1 at 525 nm ±10 nm), broad spectrum white (0-600 µmol m-2 s-1 at 400-700 nm), and far-red (0-50 µmol m-2 s-1 at 730-750 nm ±10 nm) light.
    Water-nutrient delivery is performed by active transfer through a rooting matrix via porous materials. The atmospheric composition of the Plant Habitat is 400 to 5,000 ppm ± 50 ppm of carbon dioxide. The Plant Habitat also includes an EXPRESS-rack-compatible data/photo interface and allows for real-time data telemetry, remote commanding, and photo downlink.

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    Facility Operations

    • The Plant Habitat is installed in a designated EXPRESS rack. ISS crew members connect the Plant Habitat to the ISIS drawer and to the EXPRESS rack panel.
    • After making these connections, the ISS crew members activate the Plant Habitat and check the status as needed.

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    Decadal Survey Recommendations

    Information Pending

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    Results/More Information

    Information Pending

    Results Publications

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    Ground Based Results Publications

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    ISS Patents

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    Related Publications

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    Related Websites

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    image The Advanced Plant Habitat provides a large, enclosed, environmentally controlled plant growth chamber designed to support fundamental plant research onboard the International Space Station. Image courtesy of NASA.
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