US space agency NASA will spend $23 million on toilet development to facilitate astronauts. The toilet will be installed in the International Space Station. NASA will send these new design toilets into space on Thursday, October 1.
Lightweight and small in size
These toilets have been designed at the space station especially keeping in mind the needs of women astronauts. These toilets are named Universal Waste System (U&M). It is 65 percent lighter and 40 percent smaller than previous toilets. The garbage collection system still built in the year 1990 for astronauts is used.
Convenient for female astronauts
The space station behind the creation of new toilets was to take into account the facilities of female astronauts. In earlier toilets, astronauts could either urinate or discard. But the two couldn’t work together.
The new system has both these features. The new design also requires less maintenance. Although it has been easier than before, it is still a problem. It is now placed in an airtight bag. It is then put in cargo and sent back to the earth. On the other hand, urination is filtered and reused on the space station.
The first plastic tube was taken to the Sahara
The early day’s spacecraft did not have toilets. In 1961, astronaut Alan Sheppard had to retire in his spacesuit. Earlier, plastic tubes were used to sacrifice urine in the space station, but women passengers faced a lot of difficulties.
Due to the lack of gravity at the space station, toilets were constructed keeping in mind the flow of air.