Space Poop Challenge winners announced

Have you ever wondered how astronauts poop in space? I have. Then again, maybe I’m just weird. After a visit to the California Science Center I had my question mostly answered; pooping in the space station involves a scary looking vacuum toilet with all sorts of hoses, bars and hoping you don’t get sucked in.But that doesn’t solve the problem of going to the toilet in a space suit. Until now, astronauts have had to rely on diapers (or just holding it in) if they have a sudden urge during a space walk or in other situations they might find themselves wearing a space suit. Not a very hygenic solution, especially when they may be required to wear the suit for up to 6 days in case of emergency.

But that doesn’t solve the problem of going to the toilet in a space suit. Until now, astronauts have had to rely on diapers (or just holding it in) if they have a sudden urge during a space walk or in other situations they might find themselves wearing a space suit. Not a very hygenic solution, especially when they may be required to wear the suit for up to 6 days in case of emergency.

Enter, the NASA Space Poop Challenge.

Space Toilet California Science Center

NASA put up $30,000 in prize money and crowdsourced the challenge to come up with a solution. The winning concepts have now been announced and prizes were taken home by two doctors, a dentist, an engineer and a product designer (that sounds like the start of a very nerdy joke).

None of the designs will be used directly by NASA, but they will help inform future space suit and waste disposal design. You can read more about the winning designs at the competition page or over on this article at NPR. Let’s just hope none of that dehydrated space food includes hot curry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

X

Pin It on Pinterest

X