Aeroponics is the process of growing plants in an air or mist environment without the use of soil or an aggregate medium. Aeroponic culture differs from both conventional hydroponics, aquaponics, and in-vitro (plant tissue culture) growing. Unlike hydroponics, which uses a liquid nutrient solution as a growing medium and essential minerals to sustain plant growth; or aquaponics which uses water and fish waste, aeroponics is conducted without a growing medium. It is sometimes considered a type of hydroponics, since water is used in aeroponics to transmit nutrients.
Soil is not used for aeroponics, because the plants can thrive when their roots are constantly or periodically exposed to a nutrient-rich mist.
Aeroponics offers an efficient means to grow plants, including fruits and vegetables, without potting and repotting them to replenish their access to nutrient-rich soil.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) tested the effectiveness of aeroponics on the Mir space station and the results showed that Asian bean seedlings could grow effectively in a nutrient solution in zero gravity.