The MELiSSA Pilot Plant

The MELiSSA Pilot Plant, located at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona premises, has been inaugurated in November 1995. It is the place were the results obtained by the MELiSSA international team are integrated and tested. The final goal of the operation of the Pilot Plant is to demonstrate, evaluate and improve the feasibility of the MELISSA loop concept on ground conditions, in order to guide the future developments towards an integrated biological life support system for space applications.
The general operational approach of the Pilot Plant is to study the operation of the different compartments either in isolated or interconnected operation.
The performed tasks can be grouped in different areas such as the set up and operation of the hardware of the different compartments, performance evaluation of the different units, test of the control system and mathematical models developed by the corresponding MELiSSA partners, the implementation and evaluation of complementary operations, such as biomass separation, conservation and preparation, or the determination of any required values for the mathematical models (for example growth kinetics, yields, bioreactor hydrodynamic performance, and any other that can not be obtained from the available references or are specific of the Pilot Plant hardware).
After being processed by the Pilot Plant team, the data obtained is returned to the rest of the MELiSSA partners. Iteration of this procedure allows the continuous improvement of the concept and selection of the best alternatives arising from the combined efforts of the MELiSSA partners.
Last update: 12 September 2007

In depth

 •  MELiSSA at Concordia (http://www.esa.int/SPECIALS/Melissa/SEMLSJ8RR1F_0.html)