The Living Habitat

  • Living Habitat

    Three components form the “living” habitat: Networks of sensors, life support system and the crew.

  • A resaercher at work

    Working on the bioregenerative live support system. Here, photosynthetic organisms will produce the oxygen needed by the crew.

  • Robot

    Inside the MaMBA Laboratory

    The Marvin-Figure belongs to a Conversational User Interface, which supports test persons during test runs.

  • A researcher at work.

    Working on the bioregenerative live support system. Here, photosynthetic organisms will produce the oxygen needed by the crew.

  • Cyanobakterien

    Life in the Living Habitat

    Cyanobacteria under the microscope. They are one of the living components of the "Living Habitat".

  • Researcher presenting

    Saurabh, Paul, and Ksenia presenting the Living Habitat at the MAPEX Early Career Researcher Workshop at the University of Bremen in April.

  • Christiane Heinicke

    Christiane Heinicke explaining the benefits of Mars.

The Living Habitat

On Mars, the environment outside the habitat is lethal for humans, meaning that inhabitants must entrust their lives to the life support system of the habitat. This life support system will be bioregenerative, with photosynthetic organisms producing the oxygen needed by the crew. Networks of sensors monitor both life support system and crew, and the crew interacts with the life support system through the sensors. Together, these three components form the “living” habitat.


Project Leader

Dr.-Ing. Christiane Heinicke
Moon and Mars Base Analog
ZARM – Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity 
University of Bremen

Am Fallturm 2, 28359 Bremen, DE 
+49 421 218 57855
christiane.heinickeprotect me ?!zarm.uni-bremenprotect me ?!.de


Publication highlights

Lara Watermann steht vor einer Präsentation und redet.

Human-AI Teams in a Mars Habitat: The Influence of the Perception of an AI as a Team Member or Tool on Trust and Affect

Lara Watermann, Ksenia Appelganc, Paul Große Maestrup, Saurabh Band, Anna Förster, Christiane Heinicke, Vera Hagemann

AOWI-conference of the German Psychological Society (2023)

The AOWI-conference of the German Psychological Society took place in Kassel from 12th to 15th September, 2023. The…


Integration of a Photobioreactor into the MaMBA Facility as Part of a Human-centered Life Support System

Paul Große Maestrup, Ksenia Appelganc, Saurabh Band, Florian Stechmann, Vera Hagemann, Anna Förster, Cyprien Verseux, Christiane Heinicke

52nd International Conference on Environmental Systems (2023)


Two female scientists work in front of a computer

Communication quality affects performance of astronauts and support teams through increased workload: Insights from the AMADEE-20 analog Mars mission

Vera HagemannLara Watermann, Florian Klonek, Christiane Heinicke 

Acta Astronautica  210 (2023), 162-175

doi:, preprint available open access

Astronaut crews and ground control support teams are highly…

Human habitat

Human habitats: prospects for infrastructure supporting astronomy from the Moon

Christian Heinicke and Bernard Foing

Philosophical Transactions A 379 (2021), 2188

doi: 10.1098/rsta.2019.0568

There is strong interest in lunar exploration from governmental space agencies, private companies and the public. NASA is about to send humans to the lunar surface again within the next…

Martian Landscape

A vision for Human Mars Exploration made in Bremen

M. Avila, C. Heinicke, L. Colombi Ciacchi, A. Dekorsy, S. Fehrler, K. Rezwan, N. Sieroka, K. Tracht, C. Verseux

44th COSPAR Scientific Assembly. Held 16-24 July, 2022. Online at Abstract PEX.2-0002-22.

Bibcode: 2022cosp...44.3186A

Leading space agencies have the…

Computational modeling of a ventilation concept for a lunar habitat laboratory

Maria von Einem, Rodion Groll, Christiane Heinicke

Journal of Space Safety Engineering  (2022), 145-153


Human space flight demands systems like habitats that provide a livable environment for humans on long duration missions on other planets. This…

goal conflicts

Risky Decision Making Due to Goal Conflicts in Firefighting—Debriefing as a Countermeasure to Enhance Safety Behavior

Vera Hagemann, Lena Heinemann, Corinna Peifer, Fabienne Aust, Maik Holtz

Safety Article (2022), 21


Firefighters act within extreme environments, work under threatening conditions and are often exposed to goal conflicts (e.g., self-protection vs.…


Automation as an equal team player for humans? – A view into the field and implications for research and practice

Michèle Rieth, Vera Hagemann

Applied Ergonomics 98 (2022)


The practical reality and feasibility of Human-Autonomy Teaming (HAT) are analyzed from an experts' point of view, considering current possibilities of various fields. We aim to find out…


Equipping an extraterrestrial laboratory: Overview of open research questions and recommended instrumentation for the Moon

Christiane Heinicke, Solmaz Adeli, Mickael Baqué, Giuseppe Correale, Miranda Fateri, Steven Jaret, Nina Kopacz,  Jens Ormö, Lucie Poulet, Cyprien Verseux 

Advances in Space Research 68 (2021)


Humans are once again preparing to leave Earth and land on…

Disability in space: Aim high

Christiane Heinicke, Marcin Kaczmarzyk, Benjamin Tannert, Aleksander Wasniowski, Malgorzata Perycz, Johannes Schöning 

Science  372 (2021), 1271-1272


In February, the European Space Agency (ESA) announced the Parastronaut Feasibility Project (1), a…

A review of existing analog habitats and lessons for future lunar and Martian habitats

Christiane Heinicke, Marlies Arnhof 

REACH 21–22 (2021) 100038


Many space agencies have recently agreed on the Moon as the next step in human space exploration, and impressive progress is being made with regard to transportation, particularly…


A Low-Pressure, N2/CO2 Atmosphere Is Suitable for Cyanobacterium-Based Life-Support Systems on Mars

Cyprien Verseux, Christiane Heinicke, Tiago P. Ramalho, Jonathan Determann, Malte Duckhorn, Michael Smagin, Marc Avila

Frontiers in microbiology12 (2021)


The leading space agencies aim for crewed missions to Mars in the coming decades. Among the associated…

The MaMBA-concept for an extraterrestrial base and its first module mock-up

Christiane Heinicke, Leszek Orzechowski, Marc Avila

Acta Astronautica 173 (2020); 404-413


Habitats must enable astronauts to survive in an extraterrestrial environment, but the challenge is not only a technological one: architecture and…