It is very exciting to hear the news that three new projects which are being implemented to enhance the efficiency and the sustainability of cotton farming on the Earth will soon make their way to space. On this Tuesday(April 24), CASIS which is the Centre for the Advancement of Science in Space has announced this decision and thereby selected three projects. These three projects were shortlisted within a competition which was named as the Cotton Sustainability challenge that is expected to operate on International Space Station.
Each project will get into the orbit and have access to the ISS national laboratory. It will also get access to the hardware-implementation assistance with the help of CASIS as well as NASA, as per the records revealed by NASA. In addition to this, each and every project will also receive the funding of $ 1 million the courtesy of which will be Target Corporation.
Upstream which conceptualized one of this project, is actually a California based public benefit corporation, that is set to employ a customer-friendly “machine learning platform” which will help to analyze and monitor ISS remote sensitive images that are related to cotton agriculture within the real time. This initiative will allow the firm to increase the capabilities of its “Best Management Practice Assessment and Real-Time Monitoring” platform. This will in turn help upstream to lower down the water footprint of manufacturing supply chain.
If we shift focus, another project is being led by Christopher Saski who is the director of the Genomics and Computational Biology laboratory at the University of Clemson which is located in South Carolina. His project involves trying to use genetic sequencing to find out about the gene expression and different other features cotton cultivars that are grown where there is lack of gravity. According to Saski, knowledge about the plant growth as well as regeneration could help them cultivate cotton with the help of fewer resources.
According to Simon Gilroy roots have a very important role in the process of cotton cultivation. A larger root system will always allow the cotton plants to produce more fiber in the regions of high salt levels as well as drought. It is known fact that the process of root development is actually a reason of gravity. This will induce the ISS National Lab to provide a unique situation to extract not only those factors that help in root development but will also influence the process of root architecture on the art of cotton’s resilience.