If one of the multiple possible circumstances for the world ending comes to pass – we fail to combat climate change, an asteroid hits Earth, the Trumpocalypse – and we all have to decamp to the Moon or Mars, we’re all going to need a big drink. But will this be possible in space?
Luckily for us, scientists have their priorities straight and have designed an experiment to see if it’s possible to brew beer on the Moon. Yep, go science!
The group of students from the University of California, San Diego, who designed the experiment are finalists in the Lab2Moon competition to send a project onboard the spacecraft of Indian startup TeamIndus, themselves one of the four finalists of Google’s Lunar XPRIZE challenge to send a spacecraft to the Moon.
The experiment is designed to explore how yeast behaves in lunar conditions, with a view to seeing whether it’s possible to develop pharmaceuticals and yeast-containing foods, like bread, in space. To test this, they are going to brew beer.
"The idea started out with a few laughs amongst a group of friends," said Neeki Ashari, a bioengineering student at UC San Diego and the team's operations lead, in a statement. "We all appreciate the craft of beer, and some of us own our own home-brewing kits. When we heard that there was an opportunity to design an experiment that would go up on India's moonlander, we thought we could co1mbine our hobby with the competition by focusing on the viability of yeast in outer space."