McGill MARTLET teams take home NASA and CSA Deep Space Food Challenge prize

Published: 16 November 2021

NASA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) have named the winners of the first Deep Space Food Challenge, an international contest that sought novel food technologies for future astronaut missions, as well as for use in resource-scarce regions on Earth.

Celebrity chefs Martha Stewart and Lynn Crawford joined former astronauts Scott Kelly and Chris Hadfield in making the announcements in a video aired by NASA on its television channel on November 15th.

NASA selected 18 teams, ranging from students, chefs, small businesses and others, to each receive $25,000 to advance their ideas. Additionally, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) chose 10 Canadian teams, and both NASA and CSA jointly recognized 10 international submissions. Together, all 38 winning teams have been invited to take part in a second phase of the challenge, the details of which are still to be announced.

Canadian winners included the McGill Advanced bio-Regenerative Toolkit for Long Excursion Trips, or MARTLET, a rearing, collection and transformation system for producing tens of thousands of protein-rich crickets for astronaut consumption.
Among the six McGill teams who submitted designs for food production and processing of food for possible space applications and remote locations, two were selected as Canadian winners: MARTLET InSpira Photobioreactor and MARTLET Cricket Rearing, Collection, and Transformation System, who have both been awarded $30,000 to put toward building their proposed designs over the course of the next year.
The above are excerpts from an article written by Robert Z. Pearlman, originally published November 15, 2021 in Read the full article.
See the full list of winning Canadian teams.
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