Researchers planning to brew beer on the surface of the moon, using ISRO launch vehicle

It will be an experiment to test the possibility of yeast fermentation on the surface of moon.

There's nothing better than sitting on a nice summer day having a chilled beer. But how about a beer that has been made on the moon? That is exactly what a team of engineering students from the University of California are planning to do.

After becoming one of the finalists in the Lab2Moon competition conducted by TeamIndus, the team will be brewing beer on the moon for the first time by sending a canister aboard an Indian spacecraft on 28 December. TeamIndus and the Japanese Hakuto are going to rideshare on the same ISRO PSLV launch vehicle in an attempt to bag the Google Lunar Xprize. It will be an experiment to test the possibility of yeast fermentation on the surface of moon. Researchers said that understanding how yeast behaves on the moon is not just for making beer in space but it is also important in the development of pharmaceuticals and yeast-containing foods, like bread.

“The idea started out with a few laughs among a group of friends. We all appreciate the craft of beer, and some of us own our own home-brewing kits,” said Neeki Ashari, a student at UC San Diego. When we heard that there was an opportunity to design an experiment that would go up on India’s Moon lander, we thought we could combine our hobby with the competition by focusing on the viability of yeast in outer space,” said Neeki Ashari who is part of the engineering group that calls itself “Team Original Gravity”.

The canister is designed based on actual fermenters. It would contain three compartments, the top one filled with the unfermented beer, while the second one holds the yeast. Once the rover lands on the Moon, a valve will open between the two compartments so they can mix together. When the yeast has done its job, another valve will open allowing the yeast sink to the bottom, separating itself from fermented beer. Before they can fly their beer experiment to the moon, an international jury will evaluate it in March in Bengaluru.

Inputs from PTI

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