Soybean Hydroponics in the Arctic Tundra

1219 Words Oct 12th, 2013 5 Pages
Soybean Hydroponics in the Arctic Tundra

Abstract: Soybeans will be grown hydroponically in the arctic tundra. Greenhouses will be used to extend the possible growing season. Soybeans can serve two good purposes. They can be used as food or as a way to make biofuel. This is great for the arctic environment where it is difficult to get supplies such as food and gasoline. With a steady supply of food and fuel more research can be done in this harsh environment. The goals are to produce the highest output of soybeans possible hydroponically and to convert what is not wanted for food into biofuel. Another goal is to show that hydroponics can be used on a commercial level and hopefully get more companies to
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In the United States biofuel production has grown a lot over the last two decades. In 1995 production was at 500,000 gallons, by 2005 it was 75 million gallons, and by 2006 it was at 224 million gallons [Biofuels ‘13]. The main plant used in the United States biofuel production was the soybean [Biofuels ‘13]. Currently 4 percent of the world’s demand for primary energy comes from biofuels. The more popular and more well-known hydropower only provides 2 percent of the world’s primary energy demand [Maugeri ‘10]. Most modern cars can use up to a 10 percent biofuel mix in their engines without any modifications, though some cars called flex-fuel can use 100 percent biofuel or gasoline [Maugeri ‘10]. One big advantage to using biofuel is that it produces a higher octane rating than gasoline which helps improve engine performance [Maugeri ‘10]. Biofuels currently cost a little more to make compared to gasoline at about a ten to eight ratio respectively [Sanders ‘10]. Hopefully with more farms producing the components for making biofuels hydroponically it can help drive the price down to where it can be competitive with gasoline and one day completely replace it.
Methodology: Since the soybeans are going to be grown in the arctic tundra a greenhouse will be used to extend the growing season which is typically 10-12 weeks to much longer. Soybeans grow best at somewhere between 60-86 degrees Fahrenheit [Jones ‘05]. Grow lights will be used in the greenhouse when there is

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