Rijo Mantaring was born in the Philippines. In university, he decided to major in molecular biology, with an interest in bioinformatics. He attributes his laboratory sensibilities to the intensive 160 unit course he undertook. He has shown an interest in coffee and jazz music. He has a girlfriend he calls "Z" who has chosen to stay on Earth for now.
Much of his childhood and life on earth has not been disclosed, apart from a few anecdotes.
Rijo works in the Science Division, stating that he was prompted to join the mission "to find a sense of purpose." Since joining the colony, he is generally regarded as the "go-to guy" when it comes to coffee. He has shown adequate proficiency in several preparation methods, such as drip coffees, cold brews, and espressos.
Rijo has a tendency to overwork during work hours, which forces AI systems on the ship to pick him up and carry him back to the Colonist Quarters Wing.
Rijo is part-owner and operator of the Grounds and Grapes Cafe, located in the Hub. When he's not in the lab doing work during colony hours, chances are he will most likely be serving drinks behind the counter.