NASA Has Just Unveiled a Brand-New Space Toilet—And It Costs $23 Million

“The air coming from previous toilets has been said to be the sweetest smelling air,” job director Melissa McKinley stated in a Reddit AMA. It has hand-holds and foot restraints, unlike the thigh bar used in earlier area toilets, and little ridges on the seat aid astronauts much better position themselves.A diagram explaining how the brand-new “space toilet” works.
Picture: Courtesy of James Blair/NASA”The UWMS seat might look annoyingly little and pointy, but in microgravity its ideal,” the space firm stated. “It provides perfect body contact to make certain everything goes where it should.” Designed to last at least 10 years, the new toilet has corrosion-resistant parts that must minimize the probability of unscheduled maintenance. “Less time invested in pipes implies more time for the crew to invest in science and other high-priority exploration focused jobs,” NASA said in a declaration. Most space toilets were established with male astronauts in mind. However, incorporating feedback from female astronauts, the Universal Waste Management System was created to better accommodate the female anatomy. The seat has actually been moved on so the required funnel can be positioned in a more upright angle, permitting females to urinate and defecate at the same time. Until now, its constantly been one or the other, McKinley says.Like its predecessors, the UWMS is housed inside a stall for personal privacy. At 100 pounds and simply 28 inches high, the brand-new style is 65% smaller and 40% lighter than the existing Russian-designed ISS toilet, which will stay on board. “Because the team size is getting bigger, no one wants to stand in line for the restroom,” McKinely states, “so 2 toilets will be valued by the team.”On platforms like the International Space Station, where astronauts live and work for extended periods, the UWMS will feed urine into a system that recycles the water material for astronauts to drink– after its been filtered and processed, of course.”We recycle about 90% of all water-based liquids on the area station, including urine and sweat,” states NASA astronaut Jessica Meir. “What we attempt to do aboard the space station is mimic aspects of Earths natural water cycle to reclaim water from the air. When it concerns our urine on the ISS, todays coffee is tomorrows coffee.”NASA says fecal waste is not presently processed for water recovery, however the company is studying this ability. Presuming astronauts are delighted with its performance, the UWMS could be set up in the Orion spaceship taking the first woman to the moon and back in 2024. McKinley states a big part of the job was getting comfortable speaking honestly about biological processes. “In order to make the system work along with possible for the crew, its important to get very real remarks from the users of the system,” she states in the AMA. “However, I can say that as delighted as I am about this job, I do tend to discuss it a lot. I have had members of my household get up from a vacation supper table in protest!”She says bathroom jokes were “inevitable.” The SS Kalpana Chawla cargo capsule was originally scheduled to launch earlier recently but was delayed by poor weather condition and software application issues till Friday.

“The air coming from previous toilets has been stated to be the sweetest smelling air,” project director Melissa McKinley said in a Reddit AMA. It has hand-holds and foot restraints, unlike the thigh bar used in earlier space toilets, and small ridges on the seat aid astronauts better position themselves.A diagram explaining how the brand-new “area toilet” works.
A lot of area toilets were established with male astronauts in mind. “Because the team size is getting bigger, no one desires to stand in line for the bathroom,” McKinely states, “so 2 toilets will be valued by the crew.