Challenge 5: Growing Beyond Earth®

For Groups — Maximum points: 450 (1 entry per school)

YOUR CHALLENGE: As NASA looks toward a long-term human presence beyond Earth’s orbit, there are specific science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) challenges related to food production in space. Established in 2015 as a partnership between Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden and NASA’s Exploration Research and Technology Programs, Growing Beyond Earth enables student community scientists to actively contribute data toward NASA mission planning.

For new schools: For thousands of years, humans have used herbs for medicinal, cultural and culinary purposes and their aromatic scent has provided comfort. Your challenge is to grow an assortment of herbs, evaluate your results, and share your conclusions on the most vigorous cultivar.

For returning schools: Plants need light, water, and air. Garden systems in space must provide artificial light and a method for watering, all of which can be resource intensive. Your challenge will be to grow Misome, a fast-growing Tatsoi hybrid by minimizing the input of resources while maximizing crop production. In a second trial optimize your findings by applying your own research. Downloadable PDF

Research Toolkit: Returning Schools: Yield Trial (28 Day) OR New Schools: Herb Trial (49 Day) – UPDATED September 23, 2022.

PARTICIPATION REQUIREMENTS:

  • Teachers must register to attend a mandatory workshop by September 7, 2022

  • Those teachers registered for the workshop must submit a Lease Agreement if they plan to participate in this challenge

  • Data and research presentation must be submitted for entry submission to be considered completed

FINAL TRIAL 1 DATA ENTRY & TRIAL 2 PROPOSAL DUE: December 9, 2022
The following items are due electronically:

✓  Data Requirements:
 Trial 1 Google Form submitted December 9th
 Trial 1 data entries updated weekly on provided Google data sheets
 All appropriate Trial 1 data fields complete and valid. If there are any irregularities please add to notes section.
 For Trial 1 and Trial 2, weekly student-centered, scientifically-relevant tweets including the school name, @GrowBeyondEarth, and descriptions of any photographs, illustrations or graphs
 Trial 2 data entries updated weekly on Google data sheets
 All appropriate Trial 2 data fields complete and valid. Any irregularities or empty fields accompanied by an explanation
 On-time data entry submission (late entries may not receive points)
✓  Proposal Requirements:
 Based from Trial 1, students designed an original research project
 Proposal utilizes provided template with all sections completed
 Bibliography citing 3 sources, MLA or APA format
 On-time entry submission by December 9th (late entries may not receive points)

RESEARCH PRESENTATION SUBMISSION: Due Wednesday, April 26, 2022

  • Research Presentation (suggested presentation template) submitted to Fairchild Challenge team via provided entry form

✓  Presentation Requirements:
 Opening slide includes descriptive title, student’s name and school name clearly
 Photographs/illustrations/graphs and tables must include captions
 Presentation is 5 slides maximum (excluding opening slide and references)
 Presentation must include the following: introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion, conclusion and at least 5 references
 Bibliography must cite at least 5 sources, follows MLA or APA format
 On-time entry submission (late entries may not receive points)

REQUIRED TEACHER WORKSHOP DATE: Saturday, September 17, 2022 from 11:30 am to 4:00 pm OR Wednesday, September 21, 2022 from 4:30 pm to 8:30 pm.
Scientists from NASA will conduct this workshop to introduce their research and the problems they try to solve for future space missions. During this time teachers will learn the research protocols To register, please click here by September 7, 2022.

Videos of teacher training workshops:
* Presentation by Dr. Gioia M. and GBE herb trial (new teachers)
* GBE Misome trial (returning teachers)

OPTIONAL VIRTUAL STUDENT WORKSHOP:

OPTIONAL VIRTUAL KENNEDY SPACE CENTER TOUR:

  • Kennedy Space Center tour with Dr. Gioia Massa on NASA YouTube Channel Live rescheduled to October 26, 12:30 – 2:00 pm ET.

CHAT WITH A SCIENTIST:
We will be hosting an OPTIONAL online chat with NASA scientists about the Growing Beyond Earth project. Teachers participating in GBE will receive an invitation a week before each chat with instructions on how to participate. See below for a list of scheduled dates and recordings:

  • Thursday, November 17 at 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, January 19 at 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, February 16 at 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, March 16 at 4:00 pm ET
  • Thursday, April 20 at 4:00 pm ET

FAIRCHILD FIELD TRIP EXTENSION: 
Bring your class on a virtual field trip at Fairchild. Please visit Explorer Field Trip Programs for more information.

EVALUATION CRITERIA: 
For more information on how your submission will be evaluated, see Challenge 5 Evaluation Sheet & Symposium Evaluation Sheet

450 Total Points Breakdown:

  • Trial 1 and Trial 2 Data: Max 180 pts

  • Proposal: Max 50 pts

  • Presentation and Symposium: Max 220 pts

GROWING BEYOND EARTH® STUDENT RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM DATE: Saturday, April 29, 2022, Time TBD
The Growing Beyond Earth® Student Research Symposium will take place VIRTUALLY on Saturday, April 29. During this event students will have the opportunity to present their Spring 2023 research findings to NASA Scientists.

STATE ACADEMIC STANDARDS: 
This Challenge meets various state standards, visit Challenge 5 Benchmarks

CHALLENGE RESOURCES:
Growing Beyond Earth® (homepage)
Research Toolkit: Returning Schools: Yield Trial (28 Day) OR New Schools: Herb Trial (49 Day) – UPDATED September 23, 2022.
What to Tweet

2021-2022 Growing Beyond Earth® results
Growth Chamber Assembly Demonstration (video) – UPDATED October 4, 2022.
Growth Chamber Assembly Demonstration – short version (video) – UPDATED October 4, 2022.
Click HERE to see the Growing Beyond Earth 2022 Student Research Symposium Winners

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:
Advanced Plant Habitat

Veggie Fact Sheet

GBE Twitter Feed
Growing Beyond Earth® TEDx (video) and Space Station Live: Veggie 01 (video)
Publications
Florikan Fertilizer: Collaboration with NASA (presentation)
2015-2022 Growing Beyond Earth® Seed List
How Plants Grow in Space
APA and MLA Citation Generator

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This website is based upon the work supported by NASA under grant award No. NNH21ZDA001N-SciAct. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

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