Space Log: Shenzhou-16 vegetable cultivation yields good harvest

China's in-orbit Shenzhou-16 astronauts, or taikonauts, have got a rewarding harvest from their vegetable planting experiment.

The cultivation device they used is a simple modular with open structure designed by researchers from China Astronaut Research and Training Center.

The device, which is easy to operate, can adjust temperature, humidity, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels to create environments needed for plant growth, similar to those for the taikonauts in the cabin.

It also allows the taikonauts to tend to the plants at any time.

The lettuce the crew planted has grown well in the space environment for scientific cultivation with proper light and water. 

Shenzhou-11 and Shenzhou-14 crew members also planted vegetables in orbit.

During the Shenzhou-11 mission, the crew completed the whole process from sowing and cultivating to harvesting lettuce, and the Shenzhou-14 members were able to eat fresh vegetables grown in space on the day of the Mid-Autumn Festival.

In the future, the space garden will not only provide food, oxygen and water for the taikonauts, but also serve as an experiment platform to study the effects of special environments, such as space microgravity, on the growth of plants and other biochemical factors.

So far, a total of 110 research and application projects have been undertaken on China's space station, covering areas such as microgravity physics and new space technology.

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