Thursday, January 8, 2009

Japanese reinvent the space toilet

I don't know if I like this or not, but I guess it does have some advantages. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has been working on a wearable space toilet that they hope to have flushing in the next 5 years. This is kind of a techno diaper that will be worn at all times. When it detects the user has soiled themselves, a suction device will start up and draw the waste, sound and odors away. The plan is for it to even wash and dry the wearer.
Isn't this almost what mom did when you were just learning to use the ceramic chair?
The current ISS toilet uses a vacuum which requires a proper seal on the seat or the result can be unpleasant. It also requires extensive ground training in it's proper use.
I can imagine returning to Earth after a year or more in space with the trouser, there will be one more "movement" to re-adapt to under normal gravity!

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