Discoveries made in space are inspiring solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges.

Last month NASA published Spinoff 2018, which reveals 49 tech innovations – it has helped develop – that are being used in a variety of ways, including to ‘find disaster survivors trapped under rubble’ and ‘purify air’.

And the packed programme at this weekend’s World Government Summit in Abu Dhabi will be touching on the trend during its session titled: ‘farming in space’.

Led by Dr Julio Valdivi,a postdoc researcher at NASA Ames Research Center, and Dr Christophe Lasseur, from the European Space Agency, the session tomorrow evening will examine what can be learned and applied ‘for terrestrial purposes’ from ‘food security solutions designed for Mars’.

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The role space innovations can have on global food systems is a narrative that has popped up a number of times on these pages; including the news that a Professor of Astrophysics is applying technologies used in the study of outer space to improve food security. And another – from last month – that scientists in Australia have developed a technique for ‘speed breeding’ crops which have their origins in space.