|NASA's $23 million space toilet.|
International Space Station astronauts will test a new $23 million cabinet to see if it stinks and if it works well - before using it on future missions to the Moon and Mars. The Universal Waste Management System's zero gravity toilet has been better adapted to the female anatomy than the current space toilet.
$23 million toilet on the ISS
While the toilet is equipped with biofilters and its designers predict that after two years it will still have a "sweet smell", the ISS astronauts will perform the first real "sniff test".
Provided everything works well and the astronauts are satisfied with the performance - and smell - of the toilet, a version could be installed in the Orion spacecraft that will bring the first woman and the next man to the surface of the moon in 2024.
In addition to the toilet, the discontinued Cygnus supply mission also included the crew's belongings, clothing, scientific experiments and even Estee Lauder's cosmetics.
The astronauts will then install the new zero-gravity toilet and all other experiments that will be sent to the station.
The toilet has a lower mass and volume than previous systems, is easier to use, offers more comfort and performance for the crew and treats the urine so that the spacecraft's recycling systems can treat it safely.
If there is no toilet available or the astronaut is on a spacewalk, the astronauts use MAGs, which are diapers that absorb all the waste.
The team that developed the new toilet for NASA participated in a Reddit AMA. They said it would be tested on the ISS before being used on the Orion spacecraft to the moon.
As for the odor, the team said that the toilet "collects and filters odors with a bacterial odour filter".
Odor control is an important part of the new toilet design. Says the team behind the technology - adding that no one will "smell" it until the astronauts use it.
To allow astronauts to do number one and number two at the same time, the new design seat has been moved forward from its central position.
Once the toilet has been tested by ISS astronauts and all modifications have been made, it could be used by the first woman and the next man to walk on the moon. By 2024, NASA plans to bring people back to the surface of our only natural satellite. They will arrive there with an Orion spacecraft - probably equipped with the UWMS. EXPLANATORY: The $100 billion International Space Station is located 250 miles above Earth The International Space Station is a $100 billion scientific and technical laboratory orbiting 250 miles above Earth.