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ISS Crew Gets Go Ahead to Drink Recycled Urine

NASA yesterday announced that following a report from the Water Recovery System team the crew on the ISS have been given the thumbs up to drink water that the station's new recycling system has purified.

"This has been the stuff of science fiction. Everybody's talked about recycling water in a closed loop system, but nobody's ever done it
before. Here we are today with the first round of recycled water," said Expedition 19 Commander Flight Engineer Mike Barrett.

“We're really happy for this day and for the team that put this together. This is the kind of technology that will get us to the moon and further," added Barrett toasting with fellow flight Engineer, Gennady Padalka.

"The taste is great," the AP cites Barratt as saying. As Padalka tried to catch little bubbles of recycled water floating in front of him, Barratt called the taste one "worth chasing."

While it might sound completely gross to us, the water is probably cleaner than what we drink on earth. That being said, I’d rather take my chances with Earth water than drink the purified urine of a rat. Really.

"Lab animals on the ISS breath and urinate, too, and we plan to reclaim their waste products along with the crew's. A full complement of 72 rats would equal about one human in terms of water reclamation," says Layne Carter, a water-processing specialist at the MSFC, according to a Nasa.gov.

Would you drink recycled urine? Sound off in the comments!

  • dman3k
    I assume it tastes like Gatorade after they add some fruity favoring to it.
    Reply
  • waffletronic
    Sure. Like fish & bugs and people & bears & ducks & etc... don't pee & poo in rivers and lakes... The EARTH is a closed loop system. It's a REALLY HUGE one, but really, what's the difference?
    Reply
  • matt2k
    not high on my list of things to do. actually i would never want to if i had another choice, but i wouldnt not drink it either. if it was say that or dehydration.
    Reply
  • icepick314
    i don't know what everyone's so paranoid about....

    the water purification, as the article says, is LOT better than any bottled water company uses....

    if there's such system for home use, i would use it myself....
    Reply
  • Hope Slayer
    matt2knot high on my list of things to do. actually i would never want to if i had another choice, but i wouldnt not drink it either. if it was say that or dehydration.
    Where you think tap water comes from? What do you think happens at waste treatment plants...water is treated, released back into the rivers, which inturn goes right back into water treatment plants right back into your tap. Bottled water is the same stuff just processed further to take back out chlorine, iodine, ect.
    Reply
  • tenor77
    You think they use this water to take showers? I know zero g, no shower but damn that would be funny.
    Reply
  • Gee, purified water, is just water, H2O. All water is H2O. Purifying urin is just separating H2O from all the salts and other stuff it contains.

    So no difference. Id drink it just the same.
    Reply
  • JMcEntegart
    tenor77You think they use this water to take showers? I know zero g, no shower but damn that would be funny.
    Apparently they don't take showers much (they prefer sponge baths because showering involves wearing a breathing apparatus to avoid water up the nose/in the mouth and it's a bunch of headaches in general) but yes, they'll be using it for washing too.
    Reply
  • Everyone drinks recycled urine. Who cares. Btw - this isn't the "first time" this has been done.
    Reply
  • gsacks
    I know that conceptually, this is no different than water treatment here on Terra Firma. But still...yuck!
    Reply