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Lunar soil used to grow plants for the first time


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WWW.BBC.COM

The research is an important step towards making long-terms stays on the moon possible.

 

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Scientists have grown plants in lunar soil for the first time, an important step towards making long-term stays on the moon possible.

 

Researchers used small samples of dust collected during the 1969-1972 Apollo missions to grow a type of cress.

 

Much to their surprise, the seeds sprouted after two days.

 

"I can't tell you how astonished we were," said Anna-Lisa Paul, a University of Florida professor who co-authored a paper on the findings.

 

"Every plant - whether in a lunar sample or in a control - looked the same up until about day six."

 

After that, differences emerged. The plants grown in moon soil started to show stress, developed more slowly and ended up stunted.

But those involved say it is a breakthrough - and one that has earthly implications.

 

 

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