These engineers designed better ways for astronauts to flush
Of all the things we’d like to know about outer space - Is there life on other planets? How close are we to sending a man to Mars? Just how much space is there, anyway?
We really only have one pressing question: How do you poop? Okay, actually two: After you poop, where do you put the poop?
There are no toilets in space, so astronauts must instead wear a fancy space diaper when they need to go #2.
Problem is, astronauts may need to stay in their spacesuits for up to 10 hours (and even up to 6 days!) during various phases, and no human beings, be they babies or adult astronauts, should have to sit in their own shit for that amount of time.
The good, smart people at NASA understand this dilemma, which is why they crowdsourced a real competition - naturally called the Space Poop Challenge - to find a better sanitary solution. NASA is the best.
NASA asked real engineers to develop a system inside a space suit that collects poop for up to 144 hours (6 days) and routes it away from the body, without the use of hands.
Though NASA isn’t actually using any of the winning plans, Inverse reports that some of the concepts may help designers improve future spacesuits.
The first-place winner, Thatcher Cardon, collected a cool $15,000 for his MACES Perineal Access & Toileting System (M-PATS), which sure sounds legit to us.
One small poop for man, and one giant dump for mankind, or something.
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