I believe many of my friends have heard of space breeding. Some of the crops we eat now are bred through space breeding. So what is space breeding? Send the seeds to space for a period of time, then return to the earth and plant them again. What changes will happen?
Space breeding is also called space breeding, or space mutation breeding. It is to send crop seeds to space by returning satellites or high-altitude balloons, using the special environmental mutagenesis of space to mutate the seeds, and then return to the ground for cultivation. New technologies for breeding new crop varieties.
We all know that the earliest life on the earth was born 3.8 billion years ago, so how did the early primitive life evolve step by step to the current complex and advanced world of life? In fact, through the continuous mutation of genes, only genes can continue to mutate, and excellent genes will be passed on from generation to generation. In the end, life will become more and more complex and more advanced.
Even though the Earth now has intelligent life humans, human genes continue to mutate and evolve to more complex and advanced life, but it takes a very long time. Plants are also a category of the world of life, and they also need constant genetic mutations to improve themselves.
The crops eaten by humans are basically realized by primitive plants through constant genetic mutations. However, if life wants to achieve a qualitative mutation, it has very high requirements on the environment. If the ecological environment has been maintained in a relatively stable state, then the large variation of plants is also difficult to occur, unless the ecological environment changes drastically.
Today’s earth’s ecological environment has been formed for tens of millions of years. In this stable environment, various plants and crops have basically been shaped. It is very difficult for them to make huge changes, even as human beings have entered the age of science and technology. Since then, many scientists have made artificial genetic mutations on crops through artificial breeding and improvement methods, but this kind of mutation does not make the seeds change qualitatively.
If we want to turn the fruit of a crop into a giant, and make its originally very small fruit several times or even dozens of times larger, then no matter how hard we work in the global environment, it will not be achieved. But it’s different in space. You must know that the space environment is completely different from the earth. It is a vacuum environment with high-energy particle radiation everywhere and a powerful cosmic magnetic field.
Only when the seeds are sent to space and subjected to mutation in the new harsh environment can they mutate into an alternative species that is completely different from the seeds of the earth. We replant these seeds that have been mutated in the space environment and replant them in the ground, and the crops that grow out may have very obvious or even subversive changes.
Of course, space breeding is not as simple as we thought. Not all seeds can be brought into the space environment for mutagenesis, and it is not simply a matter of carrying a vehicle into space. There are a series of very tedious screening and breeding processes.
First of all, the seeds that enter the space must be strictly screened. With the current space technology strength of human beings, the cost of going to space is very high. The seeds that can be carried are limited, so we have to select varieties with good stability, strong disease resistance, and high yield. Only these seeds are eligible to enter space for cultivation.
Of course, not all of these seeds entering space can have genetic mutations, but the probability is much greater than that on Earth, and there are more unknown variables. According to the research of scientists, in the earth environment, the probability of genetic mutations in organisms is very low, only about one in 200,000.
However, in space, due to the complex and harsh environment, the probability of genetic mutations in organisms is very high, reaching one percent or one thousandth, and the probability of this mutation is already very high. Therefore, when astronauts perform space missions, they not only need to do all kinds of protection, but also cannot stay in space for too long. Even so, the probability of astronauts having genetic mutations in space is very high.
After sending the seeds into space for a period of time, because the probability of genetic mutation is not 100%, we can’t see which seeds have mutated from the appearance of the seeds, so after returning to the earth, breeders need to cultivate them all , Judging the selection through the later growth process.
We all know that gene mutations are diverse, and they cannot control the direction of mutations. There are good mutations and bad mutations. It is precisely because of genetic mutations that are good and bad, so all kinds of living things will have various problems, even in the genes of advanced intelligent life humans, there are also many bad genes, and they cause us to have various diseases.
The same is true for space seeds. Genetic mutations have no direction. The mutated seeds may become better seeds, or they may become harmful individuals. Breeders use cultivation and observation to remove those harmful individuals and leave better mutant seeds. These excellent mutant genes will give the seeds some new characteristics, such as larger size and sweeter.
After the breeders select the seeds with excellent mutations, they are not ready to be put on the market for large-scale planting, but they need to be self-bred again. Under normal circumstances, a crop seed needs to be cultivated for at least 4 generations to form a more stable variety, and space seeds also need such a self-breeding for at least 4 years.
The excellent seeds cultivated through mutations in the space environment have allowed humans to enrich crops and obtain more distinctive space fruits. They are big and sweet, with bright and beautiful colors. As for the crops cultivated in space, the focus of more people’s attention is on its size, which is not an ordinary size, and it has increased by tens of times or hundreds of times. For example, ordinary pumpkins are generally only about 2 kilograms in size, while pumpkins cultivated in space may reach hundreds of kilograms in size, which can be called a giant.
Space breeding is an important development direction of human agriculture in the future, and with the rapid development of human industry and the continuous increase of population, the demand for crops in the future will also increase. However, as the earth’s ecology continues to deteriorate, a large amount of land will become impossible to grow. What should we do at this time? Then we can go to space to grow crops.
Space agriculture is also a future development trend. Relying on various conditions in space, crops can grow faster, not only with a short growth cycle, but also with substantial growth. Of course, to realize space agriculture, human beings need to fully enter the space age. With our current technological conditions, we can only achieve space breeding, so that we can taste more excellent crops with different tastes and water characteristics.