Mark Nelson

 

Founding director of the Institute of Ecotechnics.

 

Dr. Mark Nelson was a founding director of the Institute of Ecotechnics and has worked for several decades in closed ecological system research, ecological engineering, the restoration of damaged ecosystems, desert agriculture and orchardry and wastewater recycling. He is Chairman and CEO of the Institute of Ecotechnics (www.ecotechnics.edu), a U.K. non-profit organization, which consults to several demonstration projects working in challenging biomes around the world; Vice Chairman of Global Ecotechnics Corp. (www.globalecotechnics.com), head of Wastewater Gardens International.

Mark has helped pioneer a new ecological approach to sewage treatment, “Wastewater Gardens®” which are constructed subsurface flow wetlands with high biodiversity and has created over 90 such systems in Mexico, Belize, Bali & Sulawesi, Indonesia, West Australia, France, Spain, Portugal, Poland, the Bahamas, the Philippines, Algeria and the United States since 1996 (www.wastewatergardens.com).

He served as Director of Space and Environmental Applications for Space Biospheres Ventures, which created and operated Biosphere 2, the 3.15 acre materially closed facility near Tucson, Arizona, the world’s first laboratory for global ecology (www.biospheres.com). Dr. Nelson was a member of the eight person “biospherian” crew for the first two year closure experiment, 1991-1993. His research inside included litterfall/decomposition in the tropical biomes, population dynamics and biomass increase, sustainable agricultural system, and constructed wetland sewage treatment system.

Beginning in the 1970s, Mark worked in the high desert grassland south of Santa Fe, New Mexico where he made hundreds of tons of compost, planted over a thousand fruit and windbreak trees, creating an oasis in previously overgrazed and eroding country. Since 1978 Mark has worked in the semi-arid tropical savannah of West Australia where he helped start Savannah Systems P/L a project centered on the pasture regeneration and enrichment of a 5000 acre property in the Kimberley region.

Publications include co-authoring “Life Under Glass” and “Space Biospheres”, editing “Biological Life Support Technologies: Commercial Opportunities” and numerous chapters in books on space life support systems. His research papers include ones on ecological hierarchy, wastewater recycling through the use of constructed wetlands, and applications of closed ecological systems. Dr. Nelson was a Contributing Editor of the journal, Life Support and Biosphere Science from 1993-2002, Vice Chairman of the life science sessions on Closed Ecological Systems for COSPAR (the International Committee on Space Research of the ICSU) and a Guest Editor on the topic for the journal Advances in Space Research.

Mark’s educational background includes a Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering Sciences from the University of Florida. His dissertation involved the creation of experimental Wastewater Gardens® for protection of groundwater quality and coral reef health along the coast of Yucatan, Mexico. His M.S. was in the School of Renewable Natural Resources, University of Arizona; and his B.A. in Philosophy/Pre-Med Sciences was from Dartmouth College. Mark was a summa cum laude graduate from Dartmouth, Phi Beta Kappa and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi, the honors engineering society. Mark was awarded the Yuri Gagarin Jubilee Medal, 1993 for outstanding service to international cooperation in space and the environment by the Russian Cosmonautics Federation; and elected a Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (2008), Fellow of the Explorers Club (1994) and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (2001).

 

Books and Book Chapters (Written or Edited)

Contributing Editor, The Biosphere Catalogue (ed. T. Parrish Snyder), Synergetic Press, London and Tucson, 1985. Russian translation by MYSL publishers, Moscow (1990). German translation by Sphinx Publishers, Basel (1990).

Nelson, M.: The Biotechnology of Space Biospheres, presented at Space Life Science Symposium, Yokohama City University, Yokohama, Japan. Published in Fundamentals of Space Biology (ed. M. Asahima and G.M. Malacinski), pp. 185-200, Japan Scientific Society Press, Tokyo, and Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1990.

Space Biospheres by John Allen and Mark Nelson. Paperback, Synergetic Press, Tucson, 1986 and revised second edition, 1989. Hardback edition by Orbit Books, Malabar Florida, 1987. Russian translation by Progress Publishers, Moscow (1990), German translation by Sphinx Publishers, Basel (1990).

Nelson, M., G. Soffen, (ed.): Workshop on Biological Life Support Technologies: Commercial Opportunities, NASA Conference Publication, NASA Office of Management, Scientific and Technical Information Division, Washington D.C. 1990. Also published as Biological Life Support Systems, Proceedings of the Workshop on Biological Life Support Technologies: Commercial Opportunities, (ed.) Mark Nelson and Gerald Soffen, Synergetic Press, Tucson, 1990.

Alling, A., M. Nelson, L. Leigh, T. MacCallum, N. Alvarez-Romo, J. Allen and R. Frye. 1993. Experiments on the closed ecological system in the Biosphere 2 test module. Appendix chapter, pp 463-469 in R.J. Beyers and H.T. Odum, eds. Ecological Microcosms, Springer-Verlag, New York.

Nelson, M., E. Bass, and L. Leigh. 1993. Biosphere 2 and the study of human/ecosystem dynamics, pp. 280-296, In M. J. McDonnell and S. T. Pickett, eds. Humans as Components of Ecosystems: The Ecology of Subtle Human Effects and Populated Areas, Springer-Verlag, N.Y. xxii, 364 pp.

Life Under Glass: The Inside Story of Biosphere 2 by Abigail Alling and Mark Nelson, Biosphere Press, Tucson, 1993. 370 pp., published also in Dutch (1993) and Japanese (Kdansha Press, 1997)

McKay, C., T. Meyer, P. Boston, M. Nelson, T. MacCallum and O. Gwynne, Utilizing Martian Resources for Life Support, chapter in Utilization of Near Space Resources, ed. J. Lewis, University of Arizona Press, Tucson, 1993

Nelson, M., 1995. Design of Zero Discharge and Safe Discharge Biological Wastewater Treatment Systems Using Fast-Growing Trees, M.S. Thesis, School of Renewable Natural Resources, University of Arizona, Tucson, pp. 142.

Nelson, M and W.F.Dempster,1996, Living In Space: results from Biosphere 2’s initial closure, an early testbed for closed ecological systems on Mars,pp.363-390 in Strategies for Mars: a guide to human explorationed.C.R.Stoker & C.Emment, Vol.86 AAS Publication, San Diego CA.

Nelson, M, 1997. Bioregenerative Life Support Systems for Space Habitation and Extended Planetary Missions, pp. 315-336, In: Fundamentals of Space Life Sciences (ed. Susanne Churchill), Orbit Books, Malabar, FL.

Nelson, M., 1998. Limestone mesocosm for recycling saline wastewater in coastal Yucatan, Mexico, Ph.D. dissertation, Dept. of Environmental Engineering Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, pp. 329.

Nelson, M (Ed.), 2001. Closed Ecological Systems: Earth and Space Applications, Advances in Space Research, Vol. 27, Number 9. Papers from the COSPAR General Scientific Assembly, Warsaw, Poland in 2000. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd., Pergamon. pp. 1495-1617

Nelson, M., Pechurkin, N.S., Dempster, W.F., Somova, L.A., and M.A. Shea (Eds.), 2003. Space Life Sciences: Closed Artificial Ecosystems and Life Support Systems, Advances in Space Research, Vol. 31, Number 7:1627-1847.

M. Nelson, N.S. Pechurkin, J.P. Allen, L.A. Somova and J.I. Gitelson, 2010. Bioengineering of Closed Ecological Systems for Ecological Research, Space Life Support and the Science of Biospherics, chapter 11in Volume 10, 2010, DOI: 10.1007/978-1-60327-140-0 ENVIRONMENTAL BIOTECHNOLOGY in the Handbook of Environmental Engineering series, Editors: Lawrence K. Wang, Volodymyr Ivanov and Joo-Hwa Tay,The Humana Press, Inc., Totowa, NJ

L.A. Somova , N.S. Pechurkin and M. Nelson, 2010. Microbial Ecology of Isolated Life Support Systems (LSS), Chapter 6 In Volume 10, ENVIRONMENTAL BIOTECHNOLOGY in the Handbook of Environmental Engineering series, The Humana Press, Inc., Totowa, NJ

M, Nelson (ed.), Space Life Sciences: Closed Ecological Systems, Earth and Space Applications, Advances in Space Research Vol. 35 (9): 1503-1664 2005. Collection of papers presented at the COSPAR General Scientific Assembly, Paris, July 2004.

M/ Nelson (ed.), Space Life Sciences: Closed Ecological Systems, Earth and Space Applications, Advances in Space Research Vol. 41(5): 675-828, 2008. Collection of papers presented at the COSPAR General Scientific Assembly, Beijing, China, July 2006.

 

Conferences Chaired and Organized

Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics Galactic Conference, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1981.

Chair, Seminar on North American Succulents, Desert Dome Conservatory, Fort Worth, Texas, 1983.

Chair, Biospheres Conference, Space Biospheres Ventures, Tucson, 1984.

Chair, Genetics, Conditioning and Power Conference, Institute of Ecotechnics, Aix-en Provence, France, 1985.
Chair, Biosphere 2 Conference, Space Biospheres Ventures, Tucson, 1985.

Chair, The Agenda: Possibilities, Tasks and Groups Conference, Institute of Ecotechnics, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1986.

Chair, First International Review of the History, Current Work and Future of Closed Ecological Systems conference, organized by the Institute of Ecotechnics, sponsored by Space Biospheres Ventures and held at the Royal Society in London at the invitation of Professor Keith Runcorn, fellow of the Royal Society and member, SBV Review Committee, 1987.

Co-chair, Bio-Astronautics: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, panel with Academician Oleg Gazenko, Space Future Forum, USSR Academy of Sciences, Moscow, 1987.
Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics Conference on The Revolution: Information, Genes and Artificial Intelligence, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1988.

Section chair, Space Manufacturing 7: Space Resources to Improve Life on Earth, 9th Princeton/AIAA/ Space Studies Institute conference, Princeton. Workshop section on Space Biospheres. Published in Space
Manufacturing 7: Space Resources to improve Life on Earth, proceedings of the 9th Princeton/AlAA/Space Studies Institute, (ed. G. Maryniak), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Washington D.C., 1989.

Section chair, Space Manufacturing, 8, 10th Princeton/AIAA/Space Studies Institute conference, Princeton. Workshop section on ;Space Biospheres. Biosphere 2 Update Published in Space Manufacturing 8, proceedings of the 10th Princeton AlAA/Space Studies Institute, (ed. Greg Maryniak), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Washington D.C. 1991.

Co-chair, Second International Review of the History, Current Work and Future of Closed Ecological Systems conference, co-sponsored by the Institute of Biophysics (USSR), Space Biospheres Ventures and the Institute of Ecotechnics, held in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia. Conference chair: Professor I.I. Gitelson, Director of the Institute of Biophysics, USSR Academy of Sciences, Siberian Branch, and Director, BIOS-3 Project, Krasnoyarsk. Co-chairs: Mark Nelson, SBV, and Dr. G.M. Lisovsky, Vice-Director, Institute of BioPhysics, USSR, 1989.

Chair, Biological Life Support Systems: Commercial Opportunities, a workshop sponsored by the NASA Office of Commercial Programs (Technology Utilization) and hosted by Space Biospheres Ventures at the Biosphere 2 Project site, Tucson, 1989.

Organizer and co-chair, Third International Workshop on Closed Ecological Systems with a session on Carbon Dynamics and Cycling in Natural and Engineered Ecosystems, April 1992, Biosphere 2 project site.

Organizing Committee and co-chair, Fourth International Workshop on Biospherics and Closed Ecological Systems, Linnean Society, April, 1996.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: Complexity: Biospheres, Culture and Evolution,
October, 1997, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: The Future: Worlds, History and Society,
October, 1998, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: Experimental Metaphysics: Physiology, Remote Sensing and Cognitive Structures, October, 1999, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizing Committee: Mars Ecosynthesis: Creating Open and Closed Ecosystems, workshop sponsored by NASA Ames Research Center, Astrobiology Institute and Global Ecotechnics consortium, Synergia Ranch, Santa Fe, NM, September 2000.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference, Exploration: Art, Science and Projects, October, 2001, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: Time: Metapatterns, the Present Moment and Evolution , October, 2001, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: The Ethnosphere: Memes, Themes and Dreams, October, 2002, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair: Institute of Ecotechnics conference: The Cybersphere: Intelligence, Feedback and Action,
November, 2003, Synergia Ranch Conference Center, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: The Noosphere: Science, Art and Projects, October, 2004, Les Marronniers Conference Center, Aix-en-Provence, France.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference: The Technosphere: Revolution, Evolution and Involution, October 2005, Synergia Ranch Conference Center, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Organizer and Chair, Institute of Ecotechnics conference, “The Microcosmos: The Human Body, Brain and Behavior”, Synergia Ranch Conference Center, Santa Fe, New Mexico, October 2007.

 

Papers and Conference Presentations

Nelson, M.: Man in the Desert, Desert Conference, Institute of Ecotechnics. Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1977.

Nelson, M.: Patterns of mountain settlement correlated with changes in modes of transport; Mountain Conference, Institute of Ecotechnics, Katmandu, Nepal, 1979.

Nelson, M.: Conceptual Model to Evaluate Ecological Regions; in Man, Earth, and the Challenges, proceedings of the Institute of Ecotechnics Planet Earth Conference, Synergetic Press, London, 1981.

Nelson, M.: Synergetic Management of the Savannahs, presented at the Second International Savannah Symposium, CSIRO, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Published in The World’s Savannah: Ecology and Management, Australian Academy of Science, (ed. Mott and Tothill) University of Queensland Press, 1985.

Allen, J.P., Nelson, M., and Snyder, T.P., Institute of Ecotechnics, in The Environmentalist, 4 (1984) 205-218, Geneva, 1985.

Nelson, M., Hawes, P., and Augustine, M.: Life Systems for a Lunar Base, delivered at Lunar and Planetary Institute Conference,Houston, and published, pp. 513-518, in The Second Conference on Lunar Bases and Space Activities in the 21st Century (ed. W. W. Mendell), NASA Conference Publication 3168, 2 vols.

Nelson, M. and Allen, J.P.: Ecology and Space, presented at Japanese Society for Biological Sciences in Space, Second Annual Conference, Tokyo. Published in Human Engineering in Space, Japanese Society for Biological Sciences in Space publication series, Vol. 3, No. 1, Tokyo, 1989, and reprinted in Lunar Habitation Vol. 1, by Japan Macro-Engineer Society and Lunar Habitation Institute, Tokyo, 1989.

Nelson, M.: Vernadsky and the Biosphere, presented at Brown University and Vernadsky Institute Microsymposium, Brown University, Providence, R.I., 1988.

Nelson, M.: Mission to Planet Earth and Biosphere 2 Seminar, Planetary Society, held at the Biosphere 2 site, Oracle, Arizona, 1990.

Nelson, M., Alvarez-Romo, N., MacCallum, T.: The Biosphere 2 Project and its Potential Role in Assisting the Space Exploration Initiative , presented at the Innovative Technologies for the Space Exploration
Initiative Symposium of the American Astronautical Society, held at Johnson Space Center, Houston, 1990.

Nelson, M. Leaving the Planetary Cradle, The World and I Magazine, February, 1991, p. 388, Washington Times Corp., Washington D.C.

Nelson, M. The Emerging Science of the Biosphere, The World and I Magazine, May 1991, Washington Times Corp., Washington D.C.

Nelson, M., Dhyr, K., and Hawes, P., Biosphere 2: Laboratory, Architecture, Symbol and Paradigm, International Synergy Journal, Spring 1991.

Nelson, M., MacCallum,T.M., Leigh,L.S., Alling,A. and N. Alvarez-Romo, Innovative Approaches for Integration in Bioregenerative Testbeds -Biosphere 2 Project, Paper for Biosphere Symposium, 24 May 1991 sponsored by Japanese CELSS Society and Japanese Society of High Technology in Agriculture. Tokyo, Japan, published in symposium proceedings.

Nelson, M. and Allen, J.P.: Ecology and Space, presented at Japanese Society for Biological Sciences in Space, Second Annual Conference, Tokyo. Published in Human Engineering in Space, Japanese Society for Biological Sciences in Space publication series, Vol. 3, No. 1, Tokyo, 1989, and reprinted in Lunar Habitation Vol. 1, by Japan Macro-Engineer Society and Lunar Habitation Institute, Tokyo, 1989.

Nelson, M., L. Leigh, A. Alling, T. MacCallum, J. Allen, and N. Alvarez-Romo, l991. Biosphere 2 test module: a ground-based sunlight-driven prototype of a closed ecological system. Paper for COSPAR XXVIII Plenary Meeting, The Hague, Netherlands, 1990, published in Natural and Artificial Ecosystems, Advances in Space Research, v. 12, 5:151-158

MacCallum, T., M. Nelson, J.P. Allen, L.S. Leigh, A. Alling, and N. Alvarez-Romo: The Biosphere 2 Project and its Application for Space Exploration and Mars Settlement. The Case for Mars I V, Volume 76, Science and Technology Series, American Astronautical Society, San Diego, 1991.

Nelson, M., T. Burgess, A. Alling N. Alvarez-Romo, W. Dempster, R. Walford, and 1. Allen. 1993. Using a closed ecological system to study Earth’s biosphere: Initial results from Biosphere 2. BioScience 43(4): 225-236.

Nelson, M., Silverstone, S. and J. Poynter, 1993. Biosphere 2 Agriculture: Testbed for intensive, sustainable, non-polluting farming systems, Outlook on Agriculture, Vol 13, No. 3, Sept. 1993 pp. 167-174, CAB International, Oxford, U.K. .

Nelson, M, W. F. Dempster, N. Alvarez-Romo, T. MacCallum. 1994, Atmospheric Dynamics and bioregenerative technologies in a soil-based ecological life support system: Initial results from Biosphere 2. in Advances in Space Research14 (11):417-426.

Silverstone, S.E. and M. Nelson, 1996. Food production and nutrition in Biosphere 2: results from the first mission, September 1991 to September 1993, Adv. In Space Research, Vol. 18, No. 4/5:49-61

Nelson, M., 1997. Nutrient recycling systems of Biosphere 2: litterfall, decomposition and wastewater recycling, results from the 1991-93 closure experiment, Life Support and Biosphere Science, 4(3/4):145-153.

Nelson, M., 1998. Wetland systems for bioregenerative reclamation of wastewater — from closed systems to developing countries, Life Support and Biosphere Science, 5(3): 357-369.

Nelson, M., Finn, M, Wilson, C., Zabel, B., van Thillo, M., Hawes, P., and R. Fernandez, 1999. Bioregenerative recycle of wastewater in Biosphere 2 using a created wetland: two year results, J. Ecological Engineering 13: 189-197.

Nelson, M., 1999. Litterfall and decomposition rates in Biosphere 2 terrestrial biomes, Ecological Engineering 13: 135-145.

Wetterer, J. K., S. E. Miller, D. E. Wheeler, C. A. Olson, D. A. Polhemus, M. Pitts, I. W. Ashton, A. G. Himler, M. Yospin, K. R. Helms, E. L. Harken, J. Gallaher, C. E. Dunning, M. Nelson, J. Litsinger, A. Southern, and T. L. Burgess. 1999. Ecological dominance by Paratrechina longicornis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), an invasive tramp ant, in Biosphere 2. Florida Entomologist 82: 381-38882: 381-388

Silverstone, S.E., Harwood, R.R., Franco-Vizcaino, E., Allen, J. and M. Nelson, 1999. Soil in the agricultural area of Biosphere 2 (1991-1993), Ecological Engineering 13: 179-188.

Allen, J. and M. Nelson, 1999. Biospherics and Biosphere 2, mission one (1991-1993), Ecological Engineering 13: 15-29.

“Design Paradigm for the 21st Century”, lectures at the Forum 2000, Nagoya Urban Institute, Nagoya, Japan, 2000 and at the conference of the Human-Centered Design Initiative, Tokyo, Jan. 28, 2000.

Wetterer, J. K., S. E. Miller, D. E. Wheeler, C. A. Olson, D. A. Polhemus, M. Pitts, I. W. Ashton, A. G. Himler, M. Yospin, K. R. Helms, E. L. Harken, J. Gallaher, C. E. Dunning, M. Nelson, J. Litsinger, A. Southern, and T. L. Burgess. 1999. Ecological dominance by Paratrechina longicornis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), an invasive tramp ant, in Biosphere 2. Florida Entomologist 82: 381-388.

Silverstone, S., M. Nelson, A. Alling, J. Allen. 2003. Development and research program for a soil – based bioregenerative agriculture system to feed a four person crew at a Mars base. Adv. Space Res. 31(1): 69-75.

Nelson, M., Odum, H.T., Brown, M.T., and A. Alling, “Living off the land”: resource efficiency of wetland wastewater treatment,invited paper presented at COSPAR conference, Warsaw, Poland, July, 2000, Advances in Space Research vol 27, nbr 9: 1546-1556, 2001.

“Natural Systems of Wastewater Recycle and Use”, May 2001 at Udyana University, Bali, Indonesia at workshop on “A New Ecotechnic Approach to Wastewater Treatment”

“Biosphere 2 and the Ecological Engineering Design Paradigm”, May, 2001 at the University of the Pacific, Manila, Philippines at their workshop on Environmental Conservation

Nelson, M., Alling, A, Dempster, W.F., van Thillo, M. and J. Allen, Integration of wetland wastewater treatment with space life support systems,paper presented at COSPAR conference, Warsaw, Poland, July, 2000, Life Support and Biosphere Science 8 (3/4):149-154, 2002.

Nelson, M. and Tredwell, R., “Wastewater Gardens”: Creating urban oases and greenbelts by productive use of the nutrients and water in domestic sewage, paper for Conference on Cities as Sustainable Ecosystems, April 2002 sponsored by United Nations Environment Program and Environmental Technology Centre, Murdoch University, Perth, Australia.

Alling, A, Nelson, M., Silverstone, S and M. Van Thillo, 2002. Human Factor Observations of the Biosphere 2, 1991-1993, Closed Life Support Human Experiment and Its Application to a Long-Term Manned Mission to Mars, paper presented at NASA Mars Ecosynthesis workshop, Santa Fe, NM Sept 2000, Life Support and Biosphere Science Vol 8:71-82

Salisbury, F.B, Dempster, W.F., Allen, J.P., Alling, A., Bubenheim, D., Nelson, M and S. Silverstone, Light, Plants, and Power for Life Support on Mars, paper presented at NASA Mars Ecosynthesis workshop, Santa Fe, NM Sept 2000, Life Support and Biosphere Science 8(3/4):161-172, 2002

J.P. Allen, M. Nelson, A.K. Alling, The legacy of Biosphere 2 for the study of biospherics and closed ecological systems, paper presented at the World Space Congress, COSPAR general assembly, Houston, TX, October 2002, Advances in Space Research, 2003, Vol. 31, issue 7, 1629-1640.

M. Nelson, J. Allen, A. Alling, W.F.Dempster, and S. Silverstone, Earth applications of closed ecological systems: relevance to the development of sustainability in our global biosphere, paper presented at the World Space Congress, COSPAR general assembly, Houston, TX, October 2002, Advances in Space Research, 2003, Vol. 31, issue 7, 1649-1656.

M. Nelson, W.F. Dempster, A. Alling, J.P. Allen, R. Rasmussen, S. Silverstone, M. Van Thillo, Initial experimental results from the Laboratory Biosphere closed ecological system facility, paper presented at the World Space Congress, COSPAR general assembly, Houston, TX, October 2002, Advances in Space Research, 2003, Vol. 31, issue 7, 1721-1730
Dempster, W.F., Alling, A., van Thillo, M., Allen, J.P. Silverstone, S. and M. Nelson, Technical review of the Laboratory Biosphere closed ecological system facility, presented at COSPAR/IAF meeting, Houston, October 2002, Adv. Space Res., 34: 1477-1482, 2004.

H. Morowitz., J.P. Allen, M. Nelson and A. Alling, 2005. Closure as a Scientific Concept and its Application to Ecosystem Ecology and the Science of the Biosphere, paper presented at COSPAR, Paris, 2004; Advances in Space Research 36(7):1305-1311.

M. Nelson, W.F. Dempster, S. Silverstone, A. Alling, J.P. Allen and M. van Thillo, Crop Yield and Light/Energy Efficiency in a Closed Ecological System: Laboratory Biosphere experiments with wheat and sweet potato, Advances in Space Research 35 (9): 1539-1543, 2005.

S. Silverstone, M. Nelson, A. Alling and J.P. Allen, Soil and crop management experiments in the Laboratory Biosphere: An analogue system for the Mars on Earth® facility, Advances in Space Research 35 (9):1544-1551, 2005.

Alling, A., M. Van Thillo, W. F. Dempster, M. Nelson, S. Silverstone, J. Allen, 2005, The Mars On Earth® Project: Lessons Learned from Biosphere 2 and Laboratory Biosphere Closed Systems Experiments, Biological Sciences in Space 19(4): 250-260

“Introduction and Overview of constructed wetlands for wastewater treatment, ecological restoration and water conservation”, and “Wastewater Gardens: Application experience in varying climates around the world”, two talks at the Jagellonian University International Workshop on Constructed Wetlands, Krakow, Poland, October 2005.

Dempster, W.F, Allen, J. Alling, A., Nelson, M., Silverstone, S. and M.Van Thillo, 2005. Atmospheric dynamics in the “Laboratory Biosphere” with wheat and sweet potato crops, Adv. Space Res.35:1552-1556.

Nelson, M., W.F. Dempster, J.P. Allen, S. Silverstone, A. Alling, Cowpeas and pinto beans: Performance and yields of candidate space crops in the Laboratory Biosphere closed ecological system, Adv. Space Research 41(5):748-753 (2008)

Nelson, M.; Allen, J.P. and Dempster, W.F. Integration of lessons from recent research for “Earth to Mars” life support systems, Adv. Space Research 41(5):675-683 (2008).

Nelson, M.; Allen, J.P. and Dempster, W.F. “Modular Biospheres” – A new platform for education and research – paper for COSPAR 2006 in Beijing, Adv. Space Research 41(5):787-797 (2008).

Nelson, M., R. Tredwell, A. Czech, G. Depuy, M. Suraja and F. Cattin, Worldwide Applications of Wastewater Gardens and Ecoscaping: Decentralised Systems which Transform Sewage from Problem to Productive, Sustainable Resource
International Conference on Decentralised Water and Wastewater Systems, Environmental Technology Centre, Murdoch University, Fremantle, W.A. July 2006, published in: Decentralised Water and Wastewater Systems : International Conference, Fremantle, Western Australia, 10-12 July 2006, edited by Kuruvilla Mathew, Stewart Dallas, Goen Ho, IWA Publications, London, 2008

Tredwell, R. and M. Nelson, Effective Approaches for Environmental & Wastewater Management and Training – The Birdwood Downs Case Studies in the Kimberley Region Of West Australia, paper for the Murdoch University/ Conference, July 2006, Sustainability of Indigenous Communities, Murdoch, West Australia.

Nelson, M., S. Silverstone, P. Burrowes, R. Joglar, M. . . Robertson and T. Vakil, The Impact of Hardwood Line-Planting on Tree and Amphibian Biodiversity in a Secondary Wet Tropical Forest, Southeast Puerto Rico, in press, Journal of Sustainable Forestry, scheduled for publication 2010

Nelson M., Cattin F., Tredwell R., Depuy G, Suraja M., Czech A., Why there are no better systems than Constructed Wetlands to treat sewage water? – Advantages, Issues and Challenges, II International Congress SmallWAT07, Center of New Water Technologies (CENTA), Ministry of Environment, on « Sewage water treatment in small communities », November 2007, Sevilla, Spain.

Nelson, M., W.F. Dempster and J. Allen, The Water Cycle in Closed Ecological Systems: Perspectives from the Biosphere 2 and Laboratory Biosphere Systems, paper presented at the COSPAR Scientific Assembly, Montreal, Canada, July 2008.

Nelson, M. F. Cattin, M. Rajendran, R. Tredwell and L. Hafouda, Value-adding through creation of high diversity gardens and ecoscapes in subsurface flow constructed wetlands: Case studies in Algeria and Australia of constructed wetland systems. Paper presented at the 11th International Conference on Wetland Systems for Water Pollution Control
November 2008, Indore, India.

S. Anilir, M. Nelson and J.P. Allen, Designing a Small-scale Infra-free (IF) System for Community Applications: Managing Energy, Water and Waste, Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering, Vol 7 (1):77-84, 2008.

Visccher, A.M, A-L Paul, M. Kirst, A.K. Alling, S. Silverstone, G. Nechitailo, M.Nelson, W.F. Dempster, M. van Thillo, J.P. Allen and R.J. Ferl, Effects of a spaceflight environment on heritable changes in wheat gene expression, Astrobiology 9(4), DOI: 10.1089/ast.2008.0311, 2009.

Dempster, William F., Nelson, M., Silverstone, S., Allen, J.P. Carbon dioxide dynamics of combined crops of wheat, cowpea, pinto beans in the Laboratory Biosphere closed ecological system. Advances in Space Research 43: 1229-1235 (2009). doi:10.1016/j.asr.2008.12.005

Nelson, M., A. Hemsley and M. Anda, Subsurface Flow Wetlands for Domestic Wastewater Treatment in the Southwest of Western Australia, paper for the International Water Management Conference, Murdoch University, February 2011

Nelson, M., Wolverton, B.C. Plants + soil/wetland microbes: Food crop systems that also clean air and water. J. Advances in Space Research (2011) 47:582-590,
View Paper

 

Nelson, M. and H. Bohn, Soil-based biofiltration for air purification: potentials for environmental and space life support
application, Journal of Environmental Protection, doi 10.4236/jep.2011, published online.

Nelson, M., S. Silverstone, K.C. Reiss, T. Vakil and M. Robertson, Enriched secondary subtropical forest through line-planting for sustainable timber production in Puerto Rico, Bois et Forêts des Tropiques 309(3):51-63 (November 2011).

Nelson, M., W.F. Dempster, J.P. Allen, 2013. Key ecological challenges for closed systems facilities. J. Adv. Space Res. (2013),

View Paper

Education

1998 Ph.D., Dept. of Enviromental Engineering Sciences /Center for Wetlands University of Florida. Ph.D. committee H.T. Odum (chair), M.T. Brown, D. Spangler, K.R. Reddy, C.L. Montague.Dissertation on wetland wastewater treatment systems implemented and researched along the Yucatan coast, Mexico. Phi Kappa Phi, Honors Engineering Society.

1995 M. S. in Watershed Management, School of Renewable Natural Resources, University of DA Arizona.Thesis committee: L. Gay (chair), G. McPherson, M. Karpisack. Thesis: Design of Zero Discharge and Safe Discharge Biological Wastewater Treatment Systems Using Fast-Growing Trees

1964 -1968 B.A. Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire. Summa Cum Laude, High Honors in Philosophy, Phi Beta Kappa. Daniel Webster Scholar. Major: Philosophy and Pre-medical program in Sciences

Fall 1966 – Exchange student at Fisk University, a black college in Nashville, Tennessee.

 

Journal and scientific editor positions

2008- Appointed Associate Editor of the journal, Advances in Space Research

2004-2012: Elected for 2 terms as Vice Chairman of COSPAR (Committee on Space Research) F4 Section, Space Life Sciences dealing with Natural and Artificial Ecosystems

2000- –Guest Scientific Editor for COSPAR (Committee on Space Research) Session on Closed Ecosystems, Space and Earth Applications, COSPAR General Assemblies held in Warsaw, Poland (2000) Houston (2002) Paris (2004), Beijing (2006)

1994 – 2002 Contributing Editor for Earth Applications, Journal of Life Support and Biosphere Science.

 

Professional honors

Yuri Gagarin Jubilee Medal, 1993, awarded for outstanding service to international cooperation in space and the environment by the Russian Cosmonautics Federation; elected Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (2008); Fellow of the Explorer’s Club, New York in 1994, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, 2000. Honorary member, International Association for Advanced Life Support, University of Alabama at Huntsville; 1991-listing, Marquis Who’s Who in Science and Engineering, elected to Phi Kappa Phi, the Honors Engineering Society, 1998. Phi Beta Kappa. Dartmouth College.

 

Memberships

Fellow of the World Academy of Arts and Sciences (2008 – )Fellow, Royal Geographical Society (2000-2004), Elected Fellow, Explorer’s Club (1994). Vice-Chairman, Subcommission F4 (Space Life Sciences – Natural and Artifical Ecosystems), Committee on Space Research (2004-2012), British Ecological Society.

 

Research interests

Ecological engineering innovative ecological methods of wastewater treatment and use, arid zone agriculture and development , sustainable agricultural and rainforest systems, tropical savannah ecology, closed ecological systems; group dynamics, philosophy of science.