Research returns to Biosphere dome
Self-sufficiency research lab leased to environmental studies.
The Biosphere 2 terrarium in the Arizona desert once again has a research life, after surrounding land was sold recently for housing.
The University of Arizona at Tucson announced on 26 June that it would lease the 16-hectare Biosphere 2 complex for three years to conduct environmental studies. The Philecology Foundation, set up by Biosphere 2's original philanthropist founder, Edward Bass of Fort Worth, Texas, will fund the lease operations, along with potential gifts and grants from others.
Researchers hope to use the 1.4-hectare dome with an enclosed pond and vegetation for ecological studies. Earlier projects, including the 'biospherians' who sealed themselves inside for a two-year experiment, failed to prove sufficiently productive.