Sunday, August 15, 2010

Hi-Tech Toilet Woes

Astronaut Shannon Walker repairing ISS equipment. No, that's not the toilet.

While meteors streak across our sky and congressmen endlessly debate the future of the space program, life goes on aboard the ISS. Expedition 24 Flight Engineer Shannon Walker writes occasional blog entries about her current experience of living in orbit aboard the space station: .

Her latest blog is quite illuminating about the daily routines of keeping the station working so that the experiments and explorations can continue. Her blog focuses on a very important piece of equipment: the space toilet. There are actually more than one toilets aboard the station, but it's the newest more convenient one that has broken down, and she draws the duty to repair it. Evidently no one is pleased to have to rely on the Russian-built toilet in the Russian module.

What's worse than trying to fix the toilet? How about having to document and write reports about every step you take? Or finding a mysterious (?) sludge in a tube connector that isn't supposed to have sludge in it?

Read her blog and find out how she deals with the situation, and more importantly, does she repair the toilet or are the crewmembers forced to float clear over to the Russian segment every time they have to experiment with life support systems?

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