Transporting a single brick to Mars is extremely expensive. The high cost presents a challenge for those planning the future construction of a Martian colony.

A Tech Brief in our November issue highlights an economical, if somewhat shocking idea from the University of Manchester: A concrete-like material made from extraterrestrial dust and even literal blood, sweat, and tears.

The Manchester scientists demonstrated that a common protein from blood plasma — human serum albumin — could act as a binder for simulated Moon or Mars dust to produce a concrete-like material. The resulting material, called AstroCrete, has compressive strengths as high as 25 MPa (megapascals) — about the same as the 20-32 MPa seen in ordinary concrete.

(Read the Tech Brief.)

What do you think? Will Mars Habitats Be Made from Blood?

What do you think?