How do Plants Grow at the Gravity of Mars?

The objective in this experiment was to investigate the effect on plant growth when being subjected to the gravity of Mars. In order to negate the effects of gravity, Trepkowski and Wallace constructed a clinostat. By growing the plants at a Mars gravity of 0.4g (3.92m/s2), and comparing them to a set of standards, grown at regular Earth gravity 1g (9.8m/s2), Trepkowski and Wallace hoped growing Bean plants at the gravity of Mars. Although the plants were grown at the gravity of Mars, the atmosphere remained the same as Earth, as it would have been difficult to alter this to represent the atmosphere of Mars. The purpose of this experiment was to find out wether or not it would be feasible to grow plants on other planets with differing g fields. The experiment was run for five days, and the results were impressive. Trepkowski and Wallace found that the plants grown at the gravity of Mars grew, on average, 2.36cm more, in total shoot length, than those that were grown at the gravity of Earth. The experiment was only run for five days, so it is unknown how the plant growth would continue at later stages. Trepkowski and Wallace concluded that growing plants at the gravity of Mars was feasable. They also concluded that the lower gravity also had a positive effect on the plants, causing the Bean plants to grow to a longer length by the end of the five day period.

Research Done By:

Jason Trepkowski

Keith Wallace