Home / Science / This week NASA will launch new space toilets and more on the space station

This week NASA will launch new space toilets and more on the space station



A private cargo spacecraft will take off from Virginia on Tuesday (September 29), transporting tons of fresh supplies to the International Space Station, including science experiments, Estée Lauder’s skin care products, and a brand new space toilet.

The mission, known as Cygnus NG-14, will deliver 7,624 pounds (3,458 kilograms) of cargo on the 14th flight for Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus robotic spacecraft and the 13th refueling aircraft mission to the International Space Station. Cygnus will launch on an Antares rocket on September 29 at 10:27 pm. EDT (0227 GMT September 30) from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

Northrop Grumman has named the Cygnus SS Kalpana Chawla probe to honor astronaut Kalpana Chawla, one of seven astronauts who died in the 2003 Columbia shuttle tragedy.

You can watch the launch live here on Space.com, courtesy of NASA TV, directly on NASA TV start at 1

0pm EDT (0200 GMT Sep 30) or at NASA Wallops’ Ustream site starting around 5:30 pm EDT.

Related: Check out the amazing launch photos of Antares and Cygnus NG-13!

“Humanity faces many challenges today and I am proud to be part of a community that accepts challenges on a regular basis that turns problems into solutions and opportunities into reality,” David Brady, assistant program scientist for the Space Station Program International at NASA The Johnson Space Center in Houston said of the launch during a preliminary conference call Thursday (September 24).

The nearly 8,000 lbs. of the cargo transported into space by Cygnus will include crew supplies such as food along with scientific experiments and even a recently updated space toilet, officially called the Universal Waste Management System. The cargo will be delivered to support the Expedition 64 crew aboard the space station, although very soon SpaceX Crew 1 astronauts could use some of this cargo, as they are set for launch on 23 October.

NASA’s new space toilet for the International Space Station undergoes testing at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. (Image credit: NASA)

The $ 23 million space toilet, created with contributions from astronauts, will be among the important experiments and equipment sent with this launch. This toilet is 65 percent smaller and 40 percent lighter than the toilet currently on the space station, NASA officials said.

It was designed to optimize “the use of the restroom for the female crew, and NASA has spent a lot of time working with crew members … to improve the use of the dresser,” said Melissa McKinley, manager of NASA’s advanced exploration systems logistic reduction project. the same conference call.

The cargo will also include a radish growing experiment known as Plant Habitat-02; the Onco Selectors survey, which will focus on anticancer therapies; a new experiment on the water recovery system; a specialized camera that will capture what it is like to be aboard the space station in a 360-degree virtual reality; bottles of Estée Lauder skin care serum; and more.

Email Chelsea Gohd at cgohd@space.com or follow her on Twitter @chelsea_gohd. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.


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