Feeds

ISS toilet sucks again

New pump brings relief

Intelligent flash storage arrays

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). ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
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?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.