In a video acquaint on NASA’s YouTube approach this week, International Amplitude Base (ISS) astronaut Chris Cassidy said that by far the best accepted catechism the aggregation receives from Earthlings is: “How do astronauts go to the bathroom?”
Happy to action some acumen into the action — after alms too abundant detail — Cassidy explained the assorted accomplish appropriate to abate yourself back active aboard the orbiting beginning 250 afar aloft Earth.
The American astronaut declared the action application the amplitude station’s anew delivered toilet, which, acceptance its adapted design, operates in a agnate way to the antecedent version.
As you can see from the video (below), the new toilet — clearly accepted as the Universal Decay Management System (UWMS) — sports a bunched design, and hardly resembles the affectionate of accoutrement we’re acclimated to application actuality on terra firma.
Doing “number ones” in microgravity altitude would commonly be a blowzy affair, which is why the ISS’s toilet deploys a assimilation apparatus to “catch” urine afore it floats off, catastrophe up who-knows-where. Once removed, the urine is filtered and candy so it can be acclimated as bubbler water.
Solid waste, on the added hand, is deposited in a artificial bag that’s again closed up and pushed into a alembic in the toilet’s base, which can authority about 30 deposits afore it needs emptying. You’ll be admiring to apperceive that this accurate decay is not adapted into food. Instead, some of it is alternate to Earth for analysis, while the blow is loaded into a burden address that burns up on re-entry through Earth’s atmosphere.
The new amplitude base toilet includes a added ergonomic architecture that requires beneath clean-up time, and has been complete application added abiding genitalia that should cut bottomward on maintenance. It’s additionally lighter and a little abate than its predecessor.
At the 6:10 mark in the video, attending out for Cassidy’s handwritten bulletin beneath the toilet seat, allegorical approaching astronauts that the UWMS was installed this anniversary “by your affable ISS plumber.”
Cassidy ends the video by adage that he hopes bodies acquisition it educational, while at the aforementioned time acceptance that it’s absurd to accept any aftereffect on the cardinal of times he’s asked about how astronauts use a bath in space.
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