Student Uses CO2 Meter to Test Plant Growth on Mars

co2 science fair plantsHere at CO2Meter, we are always interested in helping young people interested in science. That’s why we were happy to help Tyler, a 7th grader, on his project at the Los Angeles Advanced Science Academy Science Fair.

The project is titled Terrarium Terraformers: A study of how Plants can change the atmosphere of a sealed environment. Tyler wanted to know the effects of growing plants in a hostile environment like Mars.

For the experiment, he created 3 sealed terrariums, filed them with simulated Martian soil, and put a different plant in each. Using our CO2 Mini Air Quality Monitor, Tyler then measured the CO2 levels inside each of the terrariums over 30 days. Here’s what he discovered:

  • Some varieties of plants do better in Martian soil than others.
  • The plants that do well slowly lowered the CO2 levels in the enclosed terrariums.
  • The plants that don’t do well raise the CO2 levels as they decomposed.

Tyler wrote: “I wanted to do this experiment because it seemed fun at the time, but also because I was genuinely curious about the results, and how much the plants would change the atmosphere in the terrariums. I have always had a major interest in space, and now it is stronger than ever, as I have done an experiment that may help us colonize our closest planetary neighbor, Mars. At least I hope it does!”

For his effort, Tyler was awarded 2nd place in his class, and was invited to exhibit his project at the Los Angeles County Science Fair.

We’re proud of Tyler, and hope to read about his work in the future.

Posted by CO2 Meter on March 12, 2014.
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