Feeds

ISS toilet sucks again

New pump brings relief

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
The next big thing in medical science: POO TRANSPLANTS
Your brother's gonna die, kid, unless we can give him your, well ...
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
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 ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
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?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.