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NASA Awards $750,000 in Competition to Convert Carbon Dioxide into Sugar
Team Air Company prepares materials for judging. (Credits: NASA/Amanda Adams)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (NASA PR) — On Earth, plants and ocean microbes use sunlight to turn carbon dioxide, or CO2, into sugars for energy. Humans don’t have that ability, at least not yet.

On Mars, there aren’t plants and oceans, but there is an abundance of CO2. NASA’s CO2 Conversion Challenge invited the public to come up with ways to convert this principle component of the Martian atmosphere into sugar, which astronauts could use to make useful products – anything from plastics, adhesives, and fuels to food and medicine.


  • Parabolic Arc
  • September 1, 2021