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未来系列:太空中的自给自足

FUTURES: Self-Sufficiency in Space

by A’liya Spinner

Can we survive in the most inhospitable habitat of all?

我们能在最不适宜居住的环境中生存吗?

Chariot Neptune

“战车海王星号”

One of the water recyclers has been down for days. That was all Elise could think about as she tended the aeroponics bay. It was less noticeable elsewhere on the Chariot Neptune, where the only water leaking into the environment was in the form of sweat. But here, where regular spritzes of mist fed nutrients directly to the exposed roots of the crops growing in lattices all around her, the humidity was almost stifling. This would be a normal day on Earth, she mused as she pulled her weightless body through the garden. But eleven years in perfect dryness really warps your perception on things.

其中一个水循环器坏了好几天了。这就是伊莉斯照料雾栽室时所想的一切。在海王星上的其他地方就不那么明显了,那里唯一渗入环境的水是汗。但在这里,定期喷洒的雾气将营养物质直接输送到生长在她周围格子里的作物裸露的根部,湿度几乎令人窒息。这将是地球上正常的一天,当她拉着自己失重的身体穿过花园时,她沉思着。但十一年的干燥生活真的扭曲了你对事物的认知。

Most of the crew was worried about the water, even though Chariot Neptune was outfitted with enough recyclers that, according to the builders, three could fail before clean water became a concern. Elise chose to believe that promise, and tried not to think about all of the water molecules they weren’t recovering. Oxygen levels were pristine, and the garden was producing more protein-rich algae and fresh fruits than she’d projected. The strange flu-like illness that had befallen the chief engineer and one of his assistants seemed to have been cured without breaking into their limited store of antibiotics. Everything was functioning smoothly.

大多数船员都担心水的问题,尽管“战车海王星号”配备了足够多的回收器,据建造者说,在清洁的水成为问题之前,可能会有三个出现故障。伊莉斯选择相信这个预言,尽量不去想他们没有恢复的所有水分子。氧气水平是原始的,花园里产出的富含蛋白质的藻类和新鲜水果比她预期的要多。总工程师和他的一个助手得了一种奇怪的类似流感的病,似乎没有动用他们有限的抗生素储备就被治好了。一切运转顺利。

Still, Elise made sure to turn down the misters on her way out of the aeroponics bay. Good luck was just that— luck. It was important to take all necessary precautions, too, to ensure they got to their destination with enough water to comfortably support the crew and onboard ecosystem. For eleven years the Chariot Neptune had survived on its own, receiving only the occasional transmission from Earth with advice or encouragement. With only a year to go until they reached their destination— orbit around gas giant Neptune— and began the process of converting their habitat ship into a permanent station using resources mined from Neptune’s resource-rich rings, the crew was beginning to get a little restless. The geniuses at home had spent so long determining how to keep the crew of Chariot alive that they’d forgotten to account for boredom.

尽管如此,伊莉斯在离开雾栽室的路上还是把雾气关掉了。好运也仅仅是运气而已。采取所有必要的预防措施也很重要,以确保他们到达目的地时有足够的水来舒适地支持船员和船上的生态系统。11年来,“战车海王星号”都是靠自己存活下来的,只是偶尔收到来自地球的建议或鼓励。只剩下一年的时间,他们就到达了目的地——环绕气态巨行星海王星的轨道——并开始利用从海王星资源丰富的环中开采的资源,将他们的栖息地船改造成一个永久性的空间站,船员们开始变得有些不安。国内的天才们花了这么长时间来决定如何让沙里奥号的船员们活下去,以至于他们忘记了无聊的原因。

Being bored is the best I can hope for, Elise knew, vowing not to take the fact that the ship was healthy and functional for granted. She left the garden behind and pushed herself gently through the corridors, almost as used to navigating microgravity as she’d once been to walking the streets of her hometown. The crew had taken to a bit of interior decorating, fastening drawings of their favorite Earth landmarks or animals to the walls. Paper was another commodity they didn’t have much of, but the captain had understood the need for a little nostalgia and creative expression. Maybe the next wave of Neptunian researchers and colonists would bring extra sketchpads with them when they arrived in roughly fifteen years, and the crew could add drawings of their favorite sights from the Jovian gas giant to the corridors of what would then be the Chariot Neptune Station.

伊莉斯知道,无聊是我所能期望的最好结果,她发誓不认为这艘船是正常的,是功能齐全的。她离开了花园,轻轻地推着自己穿过走廊,几乎就像她曾经在家乡的街道上行走一样,习惯了微重力。工作人员进行了一些室内装饰,把他们最喜欢的地球地标或动物的图画固定在墙上。纸张是另一种他们没有多少的商品,但船长明白一点怀旧和创造性表达的需要。也许下一波海王星研究人员和殖民者在大约15年后到达海王星时,会带着额外的画板,船员们可以在后来的战车海王星行星站走廊上画上他们最喜欢的从木星到海王星的景象。

“Attention, please.” The intercom system blared to life, and Elise caught herself on a bulkhead, waiting to hear what it had to say. “This is a reminder that today is our monthly cleaning day. To conserve water, we will be doing a reduced wash on all fabrics and equipment in need of cleaning. Please bring anything you would like washed to the sanitation module. Anything you do not bring by 1900 hours will have to wait until next month. Thank you.”

“请注意。”对讲机系统大声响起,伊莉斯站在舱壁上,等着听它说些什么。“今天是我们每月的大扫除日。为了节约用水,我们将对所有需要清洗的织物和设备进行减少清洗。请把您想洗的东西送到卫生模块。如果你在1900小时前没有带来,那就得等到下个月了。感谢您听完通知。”

That’s right. Elise pushed off again, launching herself down a side corridor towards the sleeping module she shared with two other women to gather her soiled clothes and dirty gardening tools. Back when she’d served on Earth-orbital stations, fresh clothes and equipment were delivered regularly, to cut down on water and chemical waste in space. Unfortunately, Chariot Neptune didn’t have that luxury; they had to do their own laundry, and on a budget. It could be worse, of course— if they were having a serious water shortage, they wouldn’t be able to wash their clothes at all. That would have been seriously unpleasant.

这是对的。伊莉斯再次起飞,沿着一条侧廊飞向她和另外两个女人共用的睡眠舱,收拾她的脏衣服和脏园艺工具。当她在地球轨道空间站服务时,会定期提供干净的衣服和设备,以减少太空中的水和化学废物。不幸的是,“战车海王星”号没有这种奢侈;他们不得不自己洗衣服,而且预算有限。当然,情况可能更糟——如果他们严重缺水,他们根本没办法洗衣服。会是非常不愉快的。

Overall, life on the ship wasn’t too difficult, and had been relatively smooth over the eleven years they’d been barreling along towards the distant Jovian world. It could be uncomfortable at times, and learning to live with only what they could produce and recycle had been a hard adjustment from life on abundant Earth. But the Chariot Neptune was well-equipped and well on its way to its destination, and Elise hoped that their success proved to the world they left behind that humanity was ready to expand beyond their homeworld. They were paving the way for a new form of human life— life amid the stars.

总的来说,飞船上的生活并不太困难,在他们驶向遥远的木星星球的十一年里,生活相对平稳。有时这可能会让人感到不舒服,而学会只与他们能够生产和回收的东西生活在一起,对于生活在富足的地球上的人来说是一种艰难的适应。但“战车海王星号”装备精良,驶向目的地的道路也很顺利,伊莉斯希望他们的成功能向身后的世界证明,人类已经做好了向外扩张的准备。他们正在为一种新的人类生活形式——在星空中生活——铺平道路。

Self Sustainability

自我可持续发展

Life on Earth has become increasingly interconnected, moving crops and manufactured goods to consumers across the world. We get nearly everything we need from somewhere else— our food, clothes, houses, medicine, and even our water is provided by the global infrastructure that ensures we no longer need to live like nomadic hunter-gatherers, thriving on even the most infertile lands and in crowded, bustling cities. But life off of Earth will not have access to these modern amenities, and in an ironic way, our future space colonies will have to resort to the ancient lifestyle of nearly complete self-sufficiency.

地球上的生命日益相互联系,将作物和制成品运送到世界各地的消费者手中。我们几乎从其他地方获得我们所需的一切——我们的食物、衣服、住房、药品,甚至我们的水都是由全球基础设施提供的,这确保了我们不再需要像游牧狩猎采集者那样生活,即使在最贫瘠的土地上和拥挤熙熙攘攘的城市里也能繁荣。但地球以外的生命将无法使用这些现代设施,而且具有讽刺意味的是,我们未来的太空殖民地将不得不求助于几乎完全自给自足的古老生活方式。

There are already people living in space, on the International Space Station. However, the ISS cannot be called self-sufficient; most of the drinkable water and breathable oxygen aboard the station— not to mention food, clothes, and medical supplies— are delivered from Earth. In the same vein, waste products and research are taken off of the station to keep the station clear and clean. This is by no means a quick or simple process, either. It takes days from launch for supply shuttles to safely connect with the ISS, and unloading the cargo can take multiple months. Once finished, the astronauts aboard the station often have to wait several more months for the next shipment of clean clothes, fresh food, and new oxygen. While this impressive length of time between shuttles is surely a testament to the tenacity and resourcefulness of the people living aboard the ISS, the critical cargo delivered by Earth— and the great volume that it arrives in— is evidence that the International Space Station is far from the self-sufficient space colony we often dream about in fiction.

已经有人生活在国际空间站。然而,国际空间站不能称为自给自足;空间站上大部分可饮用的水和可呼吸的氧气——更不用说食物、衣服和医疗用品了——都是从地球运送的。同样的道理,废物和研究被从空间站带走,以保持空间站的干净和清洁。这绝不是一个快速或简单的过程。补给飞船从发射到与国际空间站安全连接需要几天时间,而卸载货物则需要数月时间。一旦完成,空间站上的宇航员通常需要再等几个月,才能收到下一批干净的衣服、新鲜的食物和新的氧气。两架航天飞机之间的间隔时间如此之长,无疑证明了国际空间站上生活的人们的坚韧和足智多智,而地球运送的关键货物——以及它们带来的巨大数量——证明了国际空间站远非我们经常在小说中梦想的自给自足的太空殖民地。

What can we already do?

我们现在已经能办到哪些功能?

As more and more public and private eyes turn towards spacethe stars, the idea of a more robust and industrious space colony has become increasingly prevalent. But, as established, our current extraterrestrial habitat is nowhere near the level it would have to be to fulfill those expectations. Fortunately, since the creation of the ISS, scientists have begun to develop new and exciting techniques that can hopefully be implemented in the orbital colonies that eventually follow the International Space Station, which is slated to be decommissioned by 2031.

随着越来越多的公众和私人的目光转向太空和星星,一个更强大和更勤奋的太空殖民地的想法变得越来越普遍。但是,正如所确定的那样,我们目前的地外栖息地还远没有达到满足这些期望的水平。幸运的是,自国际空间站成立以来,科学家们已经开始开发新的令人兴奋的技术,有望在国际空间站之后的轨道殖民地上实施。国际空间站计划于2031年退役

Perhaps the most exciting of these discoveries addresses one of the pivotal concerns of a self-sufficient colony— growing food in space. Vegetables have already been grown in space, but it requires soil or an equitable growth medium as on Earth, and the process can only be done on a small scale due to sanitation and resource issues that it raises. The solution is to do away with dirt altogether, and master the techniques of hydroponics (planting in inert materials where roots are exposed directly to nutrients) and aeroponics (where roots are misted with nutrient solutions), which are already being perfected on Earth to produce space-and-resource conscious crops. But soil alternatives, of course, aren’t the only step to plant growth in space. In order to cultivate a healthy garden in space, the minor (and microscopic) components from Earth must also be integrated. The microbes that help to break down human waste into a usable resource for plants, purify water for plant and human use, and generally keep us healthy by coexisting with our bodies and crops will also need to be included, and in just the right concentrations to simulate a working ecosystem. Luckily, we may have stumbled into some of those microbes already; in the 2010s, researchers aboard the ISS discovered four unknown bacterial strains that had accidentally come aboard the station through plant-growing experiments. These strains were hardy enough to survive in the hostile conditions of the ISS, and required few nutrients to multiply, leading many scientists to believe that these microbes possessed useful genetic determinants for choosing which bacteria will make good candidates for promoting plant growth in stressful conditions. Hopefully, these innovations will create a constant food source that can be augmented by, but not reliant on, shipments from Earth.

也许这些发现中最令人兴奋的是解决了殖民地自给自足的关键问题之一——在太空中种植食物。蔬菜已经在太空中种植了,但它需要像地球上一样的土壤或均匀的生长介质,而且由于环境卫生和资源问题,这一过程只能在小范围内进行。解决办法是完全摆脱泥土,掌握水培(在惰性材料中种植,使根系直接暴露在营养物质中)和气培(在根系上喷洒营养液)的技术,这两种技术在地球上已经得到完善,可以生产出具有空间和资源意识的作物。当然,土壤替代品并不是植物在太空生长的唯一步骤。为了在太空培育一个健康的花园,来自地球的次要(和微观)组成部分也必须结合起来。微生物有助于将人类粪便分解为植物可用的资源,净化水供植物和人类使用,并通过与我们的身体和作物共存来保持我们的健康,也需要纳入其中,并以适当的浓度来模拟一个有效的生态系统。幸运的是,我们可能已经偶然发现了其中的一些微生物;在21世纪10年代,国际空间站上的研究人员发现了四种未知的细菌菌株,它们是通过植物生长实验偶然进入空间站的。这些菌株足以在国际空间站的恶劣条件下生存,而且几乎不需要营养物质来繁殖,这使得许多科学家相信,这些微生物拥有有用的遗传决定因素,可以选择哪些细菌可以在压力条件下促进植物生长。希望这些创新能创造出一种持续的食物来源,这种食物来源可以通过地球上的运输来补充,但不依赖于地球。

What still stands in our way?

还有什么阻碍着我们?

The oxygen and water recycling capabilities of the ISS are already admirable, creating fresh oxygen from electrolysis (splitting water atoms), and collecting and purifying liquid in basically all of its forms. These processes will be further streamlined with the addition of healthy, onboard ecosystems, as microbes clean water and plants produce oxygen while absorbing carbon dioxide waste from human respiration. With the development of a new, oxygen super-producing algae (that can also be eaten by astronauts as a source of protein), breathable air may soon become fully replenishable, but even algae needs water to grow, and as of now we have no way to create a completely self-sustaining water cycle aboard a space station, and new water must be imported from Earth. We also have no way to synthesize water from renewable materials that can be gathered from raw space. Rather, we would likely have to “catch” water from ice-and-water rich asteroids and comets, especially when considering colonies that orbit celestial bodies other than Earth. This, of course, is also currently out of the realm of possibility, and hopefully will be replaced by a more feasible, functioning water recycling system that does not rely on fresh shipments from Earth.

国际空间站的氧气和水循环利用能力已经令人钦佩,通过电解(分解水分子)产生新鲜氧气,并收集和净化基本上所有形式的液体。随着健康的机载生态系统的加入,这些过程将进一步简化,因为微生物清洁水和植物产生氧气,同时吸收人类呼吸产生的二氧化碳废物。随着新型超级产氧藻类(宇航员也可以将其作为蛋白质来源食用)的开发,可呼吸的空气可能很快就会得到充分补充,但即使是藻类也需要水来生长,目前我们还没有办法在空间站上创造一个完全自我维持的水循环,必须从地球进口新的水。我们也没有办法从原始空间收集可再生材料来合成水。相反,我们可能不得不从富含冰和水的小行星和彗星上“捕捉”水,特别是考虑到围绕地球以外的天体运行的殖民地。当然,这目前也是不可能的,希望能被一种更可行、更有效的水循环系统所取代,这种系统不需要依赖从地球运来的新鲜货物。

Other There are also day-to-day issues with permanent space habitation includethat are not often thought about— such as the impactwhat orbital living has ondoes to the human body, and how to keep astronaut colonists alive for a lifetime. One such example is the potential for bacterial and viral infections in space; being in microgravity weakens the immune system, and studies show that bacteria have increased virulence in space, making antibiotics less useful. A self-sustaining station wouldn’t be exposed to the pandemics of Earth, but even the healthiest of astronauts would bring with them dormant viruses in their bloodstream and the microbes of their intestinal system, any of which could potentially cause widespread illness in a closed-circuit space station. Meanwhile, mAnd then there’s the issue of more serious illnesses, such as cancer, which could develop in greater frequency due to the constant bombardment of radiation from space, heart disease, or physical injuries. Shuttling the sick and hurt back to Earth may be the only way to get people the care they need (it would be nearly impossible to get the medical equipment needed to handle life-threatening illnesses into space), but this method of healthcare is costly and  inefficient, and certainly not self-sufficient. Revolutionizing treatment for serious health conditions, as well as further research into the poorly-understood behavior of bacterial and viral infections in microgravity, will be required before living for decades in a space colony becomes feasible.

在太空永久居住的日常问题还包括一些不常被考虑的问题——比如轨道生活对人体的影响,以及如何让宇航员殖民者一辈子都活着。其中一个例子就是在太空中可能发生细菌和病毒感染;微重力会削弱免疫系统,研究表明细菌在太空中毒性增加,使抗生素的作用减弱。一个自我维持的空间站不会受到地球流行病的影响,但即使是最健康的宇航员也会携带血液中潜伏的病毒和肠道系统的微生物,其中任何一种都可能在封闭的空间站中引发广泛的疾病。与此同时,还有一些更严重的疾病,比如癌症,由于来自太空的持续辐射的轰击,癌症可能会更频繁地发展,心脏病或身体损伤。将病人和伤者运送回地球可能是人们获得所需治疗的唯一途径(几乎不可能将处理危及生命的疾病所需的医疗设备运送到太空),但这种医疗方法成本高、效率低,而且肯定不能自给自足。在可行地在太空殖民地生活几十年之前,需要对严重的健康问题进行革命性的治疗,并进一步研究微重力环境下尚不为人知的细菌和病毒感染行为。

Space Habitats In Progress

正在开发的太空栖息地

As with most seemingly impossible dreams, there are already those who are working to see them become a reality, especially in the private sector. And while perhaps these orbital colonies aren’t yet being designed to be completely cut off from Earth, many of them are already, in theory, a step above the International Space Station in terms of self-reliance.

与大多数看似不可能实现的梦想一样,已经有人在努力实现它们,尤其是私人企业。虽然这些轨道殖民地可能还没有被设计成与地球完全隔绝,但从理论上讲,它们中的许多在自力更生方面已经比国际空间站高出一步。

Starship

星舰

Starship is a working SpaceX project which aims to mass-produce the titular starships for extremely cheap ($5 million, pennies by spaceflight standards). These giant ships, each bigger than the ISS and able to hold many more passengers than the ISS can hold astronauts, are also designed to be reusable, and can orbit at a low enough altitude to minimize risk of radiation. Although SpaceX largely intends for Starship to be a vessel that carries passengers, equipment, and possibly even colonists to the moon and Mars, such a spacious and resilient ship also has habitable potential, especially if linked together in low orbit. Starship has the most carrying capacity of any rocket before it, able to house an onboard ecosystem and perhaps enough of the rudimentary medical and everyday supplies (clothes, repair equipment, utensils) needed to found an orbiting colony of humans. Certainly soon, and especially after the death of the ISS, Starship and habitable ships like it will become at least temporary homes for astronauts and scientists studying the effects of microgravity in orbital laboratories, which will test their ability to sustain colonists on board without constant refuels from Earth. At the same time, the development of Starship may ultimately make the idea of self-sufficient stations obsolete if they can make the cost and frequency of supply shipments from Earth effectively negligible for the companies who create the next generation of orbiting space stations.

星舰是SpaceX公司的一个项目,旨在以极低的价格(500万美元,以太空飞行的标准算几美分)批量生产名义上的星际飞船。这些巨型飞船每艘都比国际空间站大,能容纳的乘客比国际空间站能容纳的宇航员多很多,它们的设计也是可重复使用的,并且可以在足够低的高度轨道运行,将辐射风险降至最低。虽然太空探索技术公司在很大程度上希望星舰是一艘运载乘客、设备,甚至可能是殖民者前往月球和火星的飞船,但这样一艘宽敞、有弹性的飞船也有适合居住的潜力,特别是如果在低轨道连接在一起的话。星舰的运载能力是之前所有火箭中最高的,它能容纳一个机载生态系统,或许还能提供足够的基本医疗和日常用品(衣服、维修设备、器具),以在轨道上建立一个人类殖民地。肯定很快,特别是在国际空间站死亡之后,星舰和类似的可居住飞船将至少成为宇航员和科学家在轨道实验室中研究微重力影响的临时住所,这将测试他们在没有来自地球的持续燃料补给的情况下维持船上殖民者的能力。与此同时,如果能让建造下一代轨道空间站的公司忽略从地球运送补给的成本和频率,星舰的发展可能最终会让自给自足空间站的想法过时。

Voyager Station

“航行者”号空间站

The Voyager Station is a planned orbital hotel that aims to turn spaceflight from an uncomfortable, scientific exodus to a luxury vacation. Orbital Assembly, the firm behind the planned station,Voyager promises enough gravity to sleep, shower, and walk comfortably around habitat pods that can be “rented for a week, a month, or purchased as a vacation home”, and can house between two and sixteen guests. Orbital Assembly, the firm behind Voyager StationThe station, also boasts that Voyager Stationit will contain an on-board gym, a restaurant with regular shipments of fresh food, and a bar. It’s a lot to swallow, and the projected 2027 opening date seems optimistic at best and impossible at worst, but Voyager Station’s proposed promises  amenities that will be crucial to long-term habitation in space. One particularly important detail is artificial gravity— even a gravitational pull as light as the moon’s (which is what is proposed by Voyager) will drastically reduce the stresses of microgravity on the human body. Gyms, showers, and regular beds will also reduce health risks, and help keep visitors clean and comfortable, which minimizes sickness and the physical effects of fatigue. Of course, not being designed to be self-sufficient means that Voyager Station will invest more in luxury and artificial gravity than revolutionary water, oxygen, and food replenishment systems, but if it does go forward with construction, its design will lay the groundwork for more advanced, long-term settlements in low orbit.

旅行者空间站是一个正在规划的轨道酒店,旨在把太空飞行从一种不舒服的、科学的出走变成一种奢侈的度假。轨道组装公司(Orbital Assembly)是计划建造空间站的公司,该公司承诺有足够的重力让旅行者在栖息舱周围舒适地睡觉、洗澡和散步,这些栖息舱可以“租用一周、一个月,或购买作为度假屋”,可以容纳2到16名客人。“旅行者”号空间站背后的公司轨道组装公司(Orbital Assembly)还宣称,“旅行者”号空间站将包含一个机上健身房,一个定期运送新鲜食品的餐厅,以及一个酒吧。这是一件难以接受的事情,预计的2027年开放日期往好了说是乐观的,往坏了说是不可能的,但旅行者站提出的承诺将为长期居住在太空中的人提供至关重要的设施。一个特别重要的细节是人工重力——即使是像月球那样轻的引力(这是旅行者号提出的)也会大大减少微重力对人体的压力。健身房、淋浴间和普通床位也会降低健康风险,帮助游客保持清洁和舒适,这将疾病和疲劳对身体的影响降到最低。当然,不是为自给自足而设计意味着旅行者空间站将在豪华和人造重力上投入更多,而不是革命性的水、氧气和食物补充系统,但如果它真的进行建设,它的设计将为更先进的、长期的低轨道定居点奠定基础。

To What End?

通往什么样的结局?

Why is self-sufficiency in space the ultimate mission? Well, given the immediate goals and plans of orbital space stations, it isn’t, and likely shouldn’t be. However, advancements in self-sufficiency improve the efficiency and safety of almost all space missions, regardless of whether or not they plan on receiving frequent shipments from Earth. Should a resupply mission to Voyager Station fail, as it did three times in a row for the ISS, crew members and guests need to be able to survive on regenerating oxygen, water, and food stores aboard the station. Making months-long research trips aboard SpaceX’s Starships cost effective will likely require little to no resupplies from Earth until the experiments are finished. The same is true of the seven month trip to Mars that will someday be undertaken by humans, during which rendezvous with supply ships will be nearly impossible. Future research and observation stations orbiting Mars or other solar system bodies will also be too isolated to expect regular shipments from Earth more than once a year, if at all, and thus will need to be as self-sustaining as possible.

为什么太空自给自足是终极任务?考虑到轨道空间站的近期目标和计划,它不是,也不应该是。然而,自给自足的进步提高了几乎所有太空任务的效率和安全性,无论它们是否计划频繁地接收来自地球的货物。如果向旅行者空间站的补给任务失败,就像国际空间站连续三次遭遇的那样,宇航员和旅客需要依靠空间站上的氧气、水和食物储备来生存。在太空探索技术公司的“星际飞船”上进行为期数月的研究旅行,成本很低,在实验完成之前,可能几乎不需要从地球上获得补给。同样的道理也适用于人类未来7个月的火星之旅,在此期间,与补给船会合几乎是不可能的。未来围绕火星或其他太阳系天体运行的研究和观测站也将过于孤立,无法期望每年从地球定期运送一次以上的货物,因此需要尽可能做到自给自足。

Someday, humanity may set out to colonize farther systems, which will require multi-generational habitat ships, capable of supporting life from conception to death at old age. But the technology needed to sustain an undertaking of that scope is far beyond our current capabilities. In the meantimeRather, we can use advancements in microgravity agriculture, oxygen recycling, and quality of life to increase the length and reduce the cost of our journeys into space, and make travel beyond Earth more accessible for both scientists and dreamers alike. 

有一天,人类可能会开始殖民更远的系统,这将需要多代的栖息地飞船,能够支持生命从受孕到老年死亡。但是,维持这种规模的任务所需的技术远远超出了我们目前的能力。与此同时,我们可以利用微重力农业、氧气循环和生活质量方面的进步,延长太空旅行的时间,降低太空旅行的成本,让科学家和梦想家都能更容易地踏上太空之旅。

翻译:StarPoison@STARSET_Mirror翻译组
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