image credit – Canadian Space Agency
Longueuil, Quebec, — On Tuesday March 2, 2021, via Canadian Space Agency (CSA) astronaut Jeremy Hansen will participate in a webinar about the Deep Space Food Challenge along with experts from NASA and the CSA. They will discuss the evolution of space food technologies and answer questions.
Col. Jeremy Hansen is a current CSA astronaut and considered to be the most senior on the team, even training US astronauts. He was selected to join the CSA in the along with David Saint-Jacques. Prior to his selection as one of Canada’s newest astronauts, Hansen was a Royal Canadian Air Force captain, piloting the CF-18 fighter jet at CFB Cold Lake, Alberta.
The Deep Space Food Challenge is a competition to develop innovative ways of producing food for astronauts on space missions to the Moon and Mars, while expanding opportunities for food production on Earth. Canada, the United States and other International countries are participating via their own Food Challenge competitions.
The intersection of space-based and terrestrial food production
Food is a critical component of all human space exploration missions; but even more so for future missions to the Moon and Mars. As space missions increase in duration and extend further away from Earth there is a need to reduce the resupply of food from Earth while at the same time provide astronauts enjoyable, yet nutritious foods, to ensure they remain at their physical and psychological best. Innovative food systems that maximize safe and nutritious food outputs, with minimal inputs, will be key for sustainable human presence on the lunar surface and for future missions to Mars.
How can food production innovations benefit both people on Earth and astronauts in space?
Food security is a significant chronic challenge on Earth in urban, rural, Northern and remote communities, and within “harsh” environments. Through this challenge, innovators will develop compact and novel advanced food production solutions that have the potential to further enhance local production, reduce food supply chain shortages, and reduce the impact on the resources needed for food production in extreme environments, disaster-affected areas and resource-scarce regions.
The Deep Space Food Challenge is a joint prize competition launched in parallel by the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the National Aeronautics and the Space Administration (NASA) Centennial Challenges Program, and their allied organization, the Methuselah Foundation.
International collaboration has been key to the success of countless space missions. This Challenge represents a first of its kind collaboration between CSA and NASA in the organization of a prize competition to support the space policies of the Government of Canada and the United States Government while having broader terrestrial benefits.
The Canadian component of the Deep Space Food Challenge is intended to incentivize Canadian innovators to advance food production technologies to support long-duration missions in space and to improve the accessibility of nutritious food across Canada, including the North.
You can learn more about the challenge here:
Who Can Apply to the Challenge?
Canada is looking for Canadian innovators to apply to the Deep Space Food Challenge.
Interested American and other international applicants may refer to the deepspacefoodchallenge.org website for more information on how to register and apply to the Challenge.
Please see the Applicant Guide for more eligibility details.