Have you ever considered how astronauts use space bathrooms? It’s a complicated process with a risk of overflow and splash-back, involving straps, clamps, restraints, and suction hoses.
For crewmembers, using the loo is no simple task. Urinating without gravity requires suction tubes and perfect alignment. Part of this is to prevent waste from covering the space shuttle. Part of it is to collect and recycle urine back into purified water. Urine, water exhaust, wastewater, sweat, and breath vapor are all collected and filtered through a seven-step purifying process that turns the mix into water that’s cleaner than from the tap.
The reason that water conservation in space is of such importance is because of the cost of sending water into space. Just one gallon of water costs approximately $49,800 to send into low earth orbit. Since each crewmember requires 10,000 pounds of water, $420 million is spent each year to send the precious commodity into space.
In this infographic, EmergencyPlumber.uk.com explores the conservation of water in the final frontier and how astronauts deal with plumbing in space.