Aerospace and Defense

Beer in Space: Budweiser Aims to be the First Beer on Mars

30 November 2017

Budweiser is committed to making their beer the first beer on Mars. The brewery has confirmed upcoming experiments on the International Space Station with plants to send and study barley—the key ingredient in their beer—into space in early December.

(Budweiser) (Budweiser)

Earlier this year at the South by Southwest conference, Budweiser announced its goal to be the first beer on Mars. They say their goal is to offer a colonized red planet the same enjoyments that people enjoy here on Earth, including their beer.

While socializing on Mars might be in the distant future, Budweiser is taking steps now to better understand how its ingredients react in the microgravity environments so that when people do arrive on Mars, beer will be there to greet them.

To kick-start its research on microgravity beer, Budweiser is partnering with experts in the field, including CASIS, who managed the International Space Station U.S. National Laboratory, and Space Tango, a payload development company that operates two commercial research facilities within the National Lab. Together the group, with Budweiser’s innovation team, will initiate two barley experiments via SpaceX’s upcoming cargo supply mission, which is scheduled to launch on December 4 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. Once it has arrived on the International Space Station, Budweiser’s barley will stay in orbit for one month and then it will return to Earth to be analyzed.

“Budweiser is always pushing the boundaries of innovation and we are inspired by the collective American Dream to get to Mars,” said Ricardo Marques, vice president, Budweiser. “We are excited to begin our research to brew beer for the red planet.”

Budweisers’ innovation team selected barely to be the focus of the first two experiments in space. Malting barley is a process that results in the high-quality malt used in the Budweiser enjoyed today and the research on the International Space Station will reveal how the barley seeds react in a unique microgravity environment. One of the experiments will focus on barley seed exposure with the second testing barely germination. The research will offer insights on the steps to creating beer on the Red Planet, but it could also provide valuable information on the production of barley and the larger agricultural community here on earth.

Twenty Budweiser barley seeds will be sent into the International Space Station packed in two Space Tango CubeLabs™ on SpaceX’s CRS-13 mission scheduled to launch on December 4. This project will set the foundation and blueprint for Budweiser’s next move in brewing the beer of the future.

To contact the author of this article, email Siobhan.Treacy@ieeeglobalspec.com


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