Feeds

ISS toilet sucks again

New pump brings relief

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The International Space Station's troublesome toilet is now sucking like a good 'un after Oleg Kononenko yesterday fitted the new pump delivered by Space Shuttle Discovery on mission STS-124.

The Russian ASU (Ассенизационно-Санитарная Установка, or "Waste Management System") clapped out last month, prompting a certain amount of discomfort for the ISS's three-man crew who were obliged to manually flush out the space dunny several times a day.

The ISS's toilet woes attracted plenty of media attention, with NASA forced to field press enquiries about the nuts-and-bolts of taking a zero-grav leak. Kirk Shireman, deputy space station program manager, said yesterday: "It's unfortunate we're talking about toilets, but that really is the life, that's the future of human exploration in space. I don't take it as a really bad thing. It's just something perhaps everyday people can really relate to."

Japan's Akihiko Hoshide in th Kibo module. Pic: NASAYesterday also saw the activation of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Kibo laboratory following installation of the experiment module by spacewalking mission specialists Mike Fossum and Ron Garan.

Crew opened the hatch at 21:05 GMT, and Japanese astronaut Akihiko Hoshide floated inside with a welcome sign (see pic). He said in his best Americanese: "This is a great moment for the Japanese folks. It's been like 20 plus years to get this module up in space."

Fossum and Garan are preparing for a second spacewalk today to "outfit the new lab and prepare the Japanese logistics module for relocation".

You can find NASA's STS-124 mission summary here (pdf). ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Rosetta probot drilling DENIED: Philae has its 'LEG in the AIR'
NOT best position for scientific fulfillment
FORGET the CLIMATE: FATTIES are a MUCH BIGGER problem - study
Fat guy? Drink or smoke? You're worse than a TERRORIST
'Yes, yes... YES!' Philae lands on COMET 67P
Plucky probot aces landing on high-speed space rock - emotional scenes in Darmstadt
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
HUMAN DNA 'will be FOUND ON MOON' – rocking boffin Brian Cox
Crowdfund plan to stimulate Blighty's space programme
Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The MIGHTY Scotch egg
Off to the boozer? This delicacy might help mitigate the effects
I'M SO SORRY, sobs Rosetta Brit boffin in 'sexist' sexy shirt storm
'He is just being himself' says proud mum of larger-than-life physicist
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.