ISRO Missions and Discoveries

ISRO develops Space Bricks from Martian Soil


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Space Bricks

Mains level: Not Much

Researchers from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) have developed a way to make bricks from Martian soil with the help of bacteria and urea.

Space Bricks

  • ISRO and IISc have collaborated to develop a novel scalable technique of manufacturing space bricks using Martian Simulant Soil (MSS).
  • The team first made the slurry by mixing Martian soil with guar gum, a bacterium called Sporosarcina pasteurii, urea and nickel chloride (NiCl2).
  • This slurry can be poured into moulds of any desired shape, and over a few days the bacteria convert the urea into crystals of calcium carbonate.
  • These crystals, along with biopolymers secreted by the microbes act as cement holding the soil particles together.
  • This method ensures that the bricks are less porous, which was a problem with other methods used to make Martian bricks.
  • The bacteria seep deep into the pore spaces, using their own proteins to bind the particles together, decreasing porosity and leading to stronger bricks.

Their significance

  • In the past, the team had made bricks out of lunar soil using a similar method.
  • These ‘space bricks’ can be used to construct building-like structures on Mars that could facilitate human settlement on the red planet.



UPSC 2022 countdown has begun! Get your personal guidance plan now! (Click here)

Get an IAS/IPS ranker as your 1: 1 personal mentor for UPSC 2024

Attend Now

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments


Join us across Social Media platforms.

💥Mentorship New Batch Launch
💥Mentorship New Batch Launch