Biosphere 2, in Oracle, Arizona, is a scientific laboratory designed to study Earth's ecosystems and the way people interact with them. Biosphere 2 contains mangrove wetland, rain forest, ocean, coral reef, savanna and desert ecosystems, as well as space for human habitation and agriculture.

Photograph by Colin Marquardt, Wikipedia
  • On March 6, 1994, a group of people moved into Biosphere 2, outside Tucson, Arizona. The original biosphere, Earth, is made up of all the parts of our planet where life exists. The ecosystems that can be found in Biosphere 2 are the same that can be found on Earth. These include an ocean with a coral reef, mangrove wetlands, a tropical rain forest, a savanna grassland, and fog desert.

    The seven people who entered Biosphere 2 on March 6 only lived there six months. It was the project’s second mission. Today, Biosphere 2 is owned and operated by the University of Arizona and is an important resource for physical geographers.

  • Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry
    biosphere Noun

    part of the Earth where life exists.

    Encyclopedic Entry: biosphere
    coral reef Noun

    rocky ocean features made up of millions of coral skeletons.

    grassland Noun

    ecosystem with large, flat areas of grasses.

    mangrove Noun

    type of tree or shrub with long, thick roots that grows in salty water.

    ocean Noun

    large body of salt water that covers most of the Earth.

    Encyclopedic Entry: ocean
    planet Noun

    large, spherical celestial body that regularly rotates around a star.

    Encyclopedic Entry: planet
    rainforest Noun

    area of tall, mostly evergreen trees and a high amount of rainfall.

    Encyclopedic Entry: Rainforest
    savanna Noun

    type of tropical grassland with scattered trees.

    tropical Adjective

    existing in the tropics, the latitudes between the Tropic of Cancer in the north and the Tropic of Capricorn in the south.

    wetland Noun

    area of land covered by shallow water or saturated by water.

    Encyclopedic Entry: wetland