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Tech & Science IKEA redesigned a tiny research station meant to simulate life on Mars — see inside

23:25  02 december  2019
23:25  02 december  2019 Source:   businessinsider.com.au

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Now, Ikea has provided a range of its furniture to redecorate the interior of the research station to envision how future Mars denizens might live. Take a look at the inside of the research station : The research station is just eight yards across, built from materials meant to withstand the weather on

Insider is great journalism about what passionate people actually want to know. Life on Mars ain't just a song.

  • An IKEA designer spent several days living in the Mars Desert Research Station, a facility in the Utah desert designed to simulate life on Mars.
  • IKEA initially designed a line of furniture meant for small spaces based on the station.
  • Now, IKEA has helped to redecorate the inside of the station itself using a range of its furniture, and photos show the result.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Deep in the Utah desert, a tiny, compact facility houses scientists who want to experience a simulated version of life on Mars. The furniture might look familiar.

IKEA announced this week that it has partnered with the Mars Desert Research Station to decorate the two-story habitat with space-efficient furniture that could theoretically be put to use in future Mars colonies.

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At the Mars Society's Mars Desert Research Station in Utah, scientists are figuring out how to meet the needs of potential Mars astronauts with IKEA 's designers aren't facing quite as many challenges, but spending a few days at the simulated Martian habitat in Utah got them thinking on the right track.

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The research station houses teams of six scientists at a time, who spend two weeks living off food and water rations and oxygen packs. They traverse the area surrounding the research station using all-terrain vehicles, collecting rock samples and taking atmospheric readings in a "dress rehearsal" for sending humans to Mars.

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Ikea redesigned a tiny research station meant to simulate life on Mars — see inside . Ikea believes its approach to making small spaces more liveable applies even on other planets: The company has been working with an Earth-based research facility that is meant to mimic what..more.

The site in a remote section of China's dry and rocky Gobi desert features living accommodation to simulate what life would be like on the red It comprises a large Mars -themed tourist attraction open to the general public and a simulated space exploration camp for those who want a taste of life on

The Swedish furniture giant first began working with the Mars Society, which runs the research station, two years ago when IKEA interior designer Christina Levenborn spent several days living in the habitat. Levenborn designed a line of furniture for small spaces based on her time there, according to Fast Company.

Now, IKEA has provided a range of its furniture to redecorate the interior of the research station to envision how future Mars denizens might live.

Take a look at the inside of the research station:

The research station is just eight yards across, built from materials meant to withstand the weather on Mars.

a group of people standing in front of a building

"For the habitat, we brought products on wheels for mobile living, stools for seating and table surfaces and stackable chairs for saving space," IKEA interior designer Christina Levenborn said in a release.

a person standing in front of a window

For the two weeks they spend at the facility, researchers aim to operate as if they were really isolated on Mars, surviving only on preserved food they have brought.

"We tried to work with products for small space living situation that could be arranged in a flexible and multifunctional way," Levenborn said.

a glass of wine

The facility includes a lab, where researchers can test rock and atmospheric samples they have collected.

The space's round walls posed a design challenge, Levenborn said, as did the need for lightweight, sturdy furniture."

In a small space where many people have to share workspaces, it is important to be able to adjust to everyone's needs, whether they prefer to work standing or sitting," Levenborn said.

The facility includes greenhouses meant to grow food for survival on Mars.

Researchers also breathe using oxygen tanks whenever they leave the facility.

  IKEA redesigned a tiny research station meant to simulate life on Mars — see inside

"It is necessary to have the whole crew on the same sleep-wake cycle. This is necessary anyway, to maximise the social space of the crew. When you want to be alone, you can go to your bunk and read," Mars Society president Robert Zubrin said in a statement.

"We hope to learn more about living in extremely small spaces and how our products can be used," Levenborn said. "Preparing for this kind of scarcity on Mars puts a focus on all the good things we have on earth that we take for granted."

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