NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson talked about how urine and feces are collected in a space toilet. In short, the pee is sucked to be transformed into drinking water and the poop must be collected by hand.
Many people have asked how do astronauts go to the toilet in space? So, NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson came up to give the answer to this “puzzling” question.
The urine is transformed into drinking water
In the video, we discover that a space toilet is a $19,000 small cabin in which there is a recipient which presents a long tube through which the astronauts urinate. The recipient is then used to collect all the waste and then the urine is sucked by another system that is hidden behind the toilet.
There, the urine is recycled into drinking water which also answers to another puzzling question, namely, how can astronauts have enough drinking water while in space?
NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson said the poop is collected by hand
As for the “number 2”, the feces are also absorbed by the same recipient, eventually. However, the space toilet presents a sort of a hole in which the astronauts need to place a plastic bag before taking a poop. Once they’ve finished, the astronauts have to quickly seal the bag by hand before throwing it away.
And it’s not easy to poop in no-gravity conditions.
In fact, NASA astronauts have to practice pooping in a reconstituted space toilet before they leave Earth to get used with this procedure as there have already been accidents like poop floating in space, which is not such a rare thing as you might think.
However, the hard part is when the recipient that collects the poop is getting close to its 10-day replacing deadline because as it gets fuller, astronauts have to put on a rubber glove and pack it down.
Nothing is lost in space, as everything is recycled, said NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson.