Is an ecosystem completely self-sufficient

Biosphere 2: One of the worst ideas of the century

As planned, the project was over two years after moving in - failed, as many observers said. "It takes great recognition for these eight people that we were able to walk out of here together at all," said participant Abigail Alling later in an interview. "Human group dynamics" was the greatest challenge in the dome structure, she did not want to name any details.

Shortly after the start of the project, a participant accidentally cut off a fingertip while working on a threshing machine and had to leave the dome to receive treatment. When she came back, contrary to the instructions, she brought two bags full of provisions. Thousands of other little things were brought into the glass house over the two years, including seeds, sleeping pills, and mousetraps.

Theme: outer space

The bionauts managed to feed themselves 88 percent by growing plants and keeping goats and chickens, but they also made use of stored supplies. The biosphere was never completely self-sufficient.

The test subjects also had problems with cockroaches and ants, which spread en masse in the burrow. When the participants came out, they looked pale and emaciated. On average, they lost around 15 percent of their weight in the course of the experiment.

It also emerged that the organizers had installed a kind of carbon dioxide extractor and supplied oxygen from the outside. Life on earth (the biosphere 1) could not be imitated that easily.