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News to Chew | piss

News to Chew

Taking a bite out of the world of food and food news

Space Station Water: Tastes Like Piss

May 22, 2009 By: admin Category: Food News

Tastes like piss water. It typically is a derogatory way to describe derision for weak beer. But now, the astronauts of the International Space Station are saying it – and liking it! Because on Wednesday, May 20, three crew members took sips of recycled sweat and urine in a major milestone for the lab complex.

Really. They drank piss. Pee. Tinkle. Station commander Gennady Padalka, flight engineer Michael Barratt, and Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata held a brief toasting ceremony, touching drink bags, and sipping recycled water for the first time since laboratory analysis confirmed its purity and cleanliness.

Former space station science officer Donald Pettit told Barratt “we’re getting ready to toast some of yesterday’s coffee here with you guys.”

“That’s great to hear,” Barratt said. “We’re really fat with coffee up here, which is great for me, so we’re going to be drinking yesterday’s coffee frequently up here, and happy to do it…Here’s to all of you who made this happen.

The recycling system takes the combined urine of the crew from the toilet, moves it to a big tank, where the water is boiled off, and the vapor collected. The rest of contaminants — the yucky brine in the urine — is thrown away, said Marybeth Edeen, the space station’s national lab manager who was in charge of the system. When six crew members are aboard it can make about six gallons from urine in about six hours, Edeen said.

Reminds us here at News to Chew of the classic Miller Lite beer commercial: “Less filling! Tastes great!”

Heck, we say, bottle it up, slap on a fancy label and say it’s from natural, uh, sources from outer space and NASA can fund their projects on the water income alone.

Just some news to chew on.