Wednesday, 28 May 2008

No relief on space station

Cosmonauts and astronauts aboard the International Space Station are heading for a potential hygiene hazard with the malfunction of the toilet system. The system has been experiencing problems for the past week with each repair failing.

Without the assistance of gravity, space toilets use "fan-driven airflow to transport human waste away from a crew member's body". Read the full article here.

Currently, the crew is using the toilet in the transport trip Soyuz, but it has only a few days capacity. Fox news reports that the toilet is due to be replaced in a few months by a system that will transform urine into drinkable water.

Being stranded out in space with no toilet facilities is simply awful. Cosmonauts and astronauts already suffer many privations, but this seems to me the worst! No doubt, though, they're clever folk and they'll find relief somehow.

3 comments:

Stevie said...

The headline from the New York Times on this story had me in hysterics:
Four words you don’t want to hear in space:“The toilet is broken.”
Also, in the same article an author recounted
on a shuttle mission in 1984, mission managers shut down the urine collection system out of concerns that an icicle of frozen urine at the discharge port could damage the spacecraft’s delicate tiles during reentry. The crew, including astronaut Judith Resnick, had to urinate in plastic “Apollo bags” that are stored on board.
What would Picard do?

raedical said...

I have tagged you for a meme, but feel free to ignore it if its not suitable here

The Bog Logger said...

So I'm totally crap at monitoring my comments. Also, I didn't know what a meme was so I had to look it up.

After a short delay (what! just a month!) I will do this meme thing cos it looks interesting.