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Urine Passes NASA Taste Test

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the not-mine dept.

NASA 404

Ponca City, We love you writes "Astronauts flying aboard space shuttle Endeavour are delivering a device to the International Space Station that may leave you wondering if NASA is taking recycling too far. Among the ship's cargo is a water regeneration system that distills, filters, ionizes, and oxidizes wastewater — including urine — into fresh water for drinking or, as one astronaut puts it, 'will make yesterday's coffee into today's coffee.' The US space agency spent $250M for the water recycling equipment but with the space shuttles due to retire in two years, NASA needed to make sure the station crew would have a good supply of fresh water. The Environmental Control and Life Support Systems uses a purification process called vapor compression distillation: urine is boiled until the water in it turns to steam. In space, there's an additional challenge: steam doesn't rise, so the entire distillation system is spun to create artificial gravity to separate the steam from the brine. The water has been thoroughly tested on Earth, including blind taste tests that pitted recycled urine with similarly treated tap water. 'Some people may think it's downright disgusting, but if it's done correctly, you process water that's purer than what you drink here on Earth,' said Endeavour astronaut Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper."

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404 comments

Neat (5, Funny)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795863)

However, I don't think anybody wants to drink this warm, so better make that piss frosty.

Re:Neat (2, Insightful)

siddesu (698447) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796063)

Not many grown ups on this site, obviously.

Re:Neat (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796193)

The dupes here on Slashdot don't get it that the entire planet is a closed system too. Let them have their Xboxes; when the time comes we'll use them for soylent green. Mmmmm, soylent green...

Re:Neat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796211)

Mmmmm, soylent green...

Now with more girls!

Re:Neat (4, Informative)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796307)

it's not just this site. the maturity level implied by the summary/article bodes poorly for the human race.

it's called the water cycle [wikipedia.org]. any water you consume, no matter where it's from, has been recycled through natural ecological/biochemical processes. in fact every molecule that makes up your body has been "recycled" in countless ways.

there's nothing gross or unsanitary about recycling the waster from urine through proper distillation. there is absolutely no difference between drinking water distilled from urine and water distilled from rain water or river water. that kind of irrational thinking is the reason why people will spend 10x the money to buy name brand drugs rather than the chemically & pharmacologically identical generics.

you should be more grossed out by keeping your toothbrush within 20 ft of your toilet (as most people seem to do) since studies have shown that fecal bacteria can be sprayed up to 20 ft from the toilet each time the toilet is flushed.

Re:Neat (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796385)

Yeah, pretty disgusting. That's why I never flush my toilet.

Re:Neat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796439)

And lets not forget all those happy critters in the river can't exactly jump out to take a wizz.

Re:Neat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796475)

Some asswipe modded this guy a Troll? Dubya Tee Eff!?!?!?

Re:Neat (4, Funny)

narcberry (1328009) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796081)

Some of us can't throw away $250M on something like this, we're forced to drink ours le naturale.

Re:Neat (5, Funny)

Scutter (18425) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796129)

Some of us can't throw away $250M on something like this, we're forced to drink ours le naturale.

Yeah, but here you pay a buck per can and call it "Budweiser".

Tell that to the guy (2, Interesting)

dj245 (732906) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796195)

Tell that to the guy in this movie [imdb.com]. The only time I watched it I was thinking that couldn't possibly work.

Re:Tell that to the guy (5, Insightful)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796309)

Tell that to the guy in this movie

WTF? You should have linked to Dune, [imdb.com] not frigging Waterworld! Now go hand in your geek card.

And for this bright idea... (0, Troll)

kylemonger (686302) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795871)

... they paid two hundred and fifty million dollars?!

Re:And for this bright idea... (4, Informative)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795933)

No, they paid two hundred and fifty million dollars to get it to work. In space. Without taking up to much space or energy in the space station. (Where both are at a premium.)

And this is essential technology if we are ever going to leave the Earth-Moon system. Shipping enough water for a manned trip to even the nearest planet is simply prohibitive, in weight, volume, and cost. So long-term it's a good investment. (If you think we should invest in space at all, of course...)

Re:And for this bright idea... (4, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796057)

These are a good investment even without interplanetary missions. One of the features of Frank Herbert's novel Dune [amazon.com] that I always thought fascinating was the stillsuit, where a person's waste water, whether urine, tears, or sweat, could be recycled with extreme efficiency. If you work in the desert, wouldn't it be nice to have one of these for emergencies?

Frosty piss? (0, Redundant)

renegadesx (977007) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795883)

Am I the only person who this jumped to mind when when I RTFA?

Re:Frosty piss? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795909)

I think so. Some of us were thinking of water sports.

big deal. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795899)

Barack Obama's shit passed my taste test!

A couple weeks ago, while browsing around the library downtown, I had to take a piss. As I entered the john, Barack Obama -- the messiah himself -- came out of one of the booths. I stood at the urinal looking at him out of the corner of my eye as he washed his hands. He didn't once look at me. He was busy and in any case I was sure the secret service wouldn't even let me shake his hand.

As soon as he left I darted into the booth he'd vacated, hoping there might be a lingering smell of shit and even a seat still warm from his sturdy ass. I found not only the smell but the shit itself. He'd forgotten to flush. And what a treasure he had left behind. Three or four beautiful specimens floated in the bowl. It apparently had been a fairly dry, constipated shit, for all were fat, stiff, and ruggedly textured. The real prize was a great feast of turd -- a nine inch gastrointestinal triumph as thick as his cock -- or at least as I imagined it!

I knelt before the bowl, inhaling the rich brown fragrance and wondered if I should obey the impulse building up inside me. I'd always been a liberal democrat and had been on the Obama train since last year. Of course I'd had fantasies of meeting him, sucking his cock and balls, not to mention sucking his asshole clean, but I never imagined I would have the chance. Now, here I was, confronted with the most beautiful five-pound turd I'd ever feasted my eyes on, a sausage fit to star in any fantasy and one I knew to have been hatched from the asshole of Barack Obama, the chosen one.

Why not? I plucked it from the bowl, holding it with both hands to keep it from breaking. I lifted it to my nose. It smelled like rich, ripe limburger (horrid, but thrilling), yet had the consistency of cheddar. What is cheese anyway but milk turning to shit without the benefit of a digestive tract?

I gave it a lick and found that it tasted better then it smelled.

I hesitated no longer. I shoved the fucking thing as far into my mouth as I could get it and sucked on it like a big half nigger cock, beating my meat like a madman. I wanted to completely engulf it and bit off a large chunk, flooding my mouth with the intense, bittersweet flavor. To my delight I found that while the water in the bowl had chilled the outside of the turd, it was still warm inside. As I chewed I discovered that it was filled with hard little bits of something I soon identified as peanuts. He hadn't chewed them carefully and they'd passed through his body virtually unchanged. I ate it greedily, sending lump after peanutty lump sliding scratchily down my throat. My only regret was that Barack Obama wasn't there to see my loyalty and wash it down with his piss.

I soon reached a terrific climax. I caught my cum in the cupped palm of my hand and drank it down. Believe me, there is no more delightful combination of flavors than the hot sweetness of cum with the rich bitterness of shit. It's even better than listening to an Obama speech!

Afterwards I was sorry that I hadn't made it last longer. But then I realized that I still had a lot of fun in store for me. There was still a clutch of virile turds left in the bowl. I tenderly fished them out, rolled them into my handkerchief, and stashed them in my briefcase. In the week to come I found all kinds of ways to eat the shit without bolting it right down. Once eaten it's gone forever unless you want to filch it third hand out of your own asshole. Not an unreasonable recourse in moments of desperation or simple boredom.

I stored the turds in the refrigerator when I was not using them but within a week they were all gone. The last one I held in my mouth without chewing, letting it slowly dissolve. I had liquid shit trickling down my throat for nearly four hours. I must have had six orgasms in the process.

I often think of Barack Obama dropping solid gold out of his sweet, pink asshole every day, never knowing what joy it could, and at least once did, bring to a grateful democrat.

Re:big deal. (-1, Troll)

couchslug (175151) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796053)

"I often think of Barack Obama dropping solid gold out of his sweet, pink asshole every day, never knowing what joy it could, and at least once did, bring to a grateful democrat."

Rush!
Can you hear me Rush?
Wake up, boy and come to your senses.
That Percoset withdrawal has got you raving again!

HOWEVER (5, Insightful)

FunkyRider (1128099) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795905)

you process water that's purer than what you drink here on Earth. - It might be the case physically/chemically, but not psychologically.... "Look, I'm drinking purified pee and it's tasty!" God...

Re:HOWEVER (1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795995)

Sometimes when I'm thirsty, and REALLY don't want to leave the computer in my Mom's basement - I drink urine.

Re:HOWEVER (4, Insightful)

chill (34294) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796113)

From your high userid I can identify you as a noob. For future reference, these types of comments are best posted ANONYMOUSLY. God help you if anyone knows your real name. I foresee a future employer doing a google search on your various aliases and THAT comment turning up.

Re:HOWEVER (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796353)

From your high userid

Dude, UIDs are up to the 1.4M range now. I don't think you can call his "high" when it falls into the bottom 50%.

Re:HOWEVER (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796093)

To be marketed to consumers on earth as "Lemon Tang," along with a newly formulated (ahem) "Space Food Sticks."

Re:HOWEVER (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796407)

So what do you think that the water your drinking is? Yep, more than likely its been pee a few times over, along with being dinosaur spit, and a whole lot of other things. Its called the water cycle.

The Rain in Spain... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795913)

The rain in Spain comes mainly from the latrine..
Doesn't quiet have the same ring to it.

In space... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795921)

...no one can hear you steam. Your piss.

Space is a horrible place.

More like "not far enough" (4, Insightful)

RobertB-DC (622190) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795931)

Oh yeah, funny, astronaut pee. But for crying out loud (and losing valuable water in the process), what is so hard to understand about a closed system?

"Going too far" is spending millions of dollars to send precious DHMO [dhmo.org] to the space station, when there are perfectly good pre-assembled dihydrogen monoxide molecules being blown out into the vacuum.

Re:More like "not far enough" (1, Interesting)

compro01 (777531) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796073)

what is so hard to understand about a closed system?

1. Getting it to work properly in microgravity.

2. Doing so without taking up very much space or power, as both are in short supply on the ISS.

3. Getting it to work reliably, as it would be decidedly bad for this kind of thing to break down halfway to Mars.

Childish (5, Insightful)

Dan East (318230) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795937)

It's bad enough that the mainstream media has been acting like a bunch of prepubescent children over the urine recycling, but now Slashdot has to get into the game as well?

"that may leave you wondering if NASA is taking recycling too far"

Uh, nope, it doesn't leave me wondering that at all. In fact, when I first read about it I was rather surprised that the ISS wasn't recycling urine already. Any manned moon-base, or long-duration trip to reach Mars, would absolutely require the recycling of urine.

Re:Childish (5, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796077)

People are too far from their food. If people are upset over urine, what would they think of all of the solid waste that ends up as fertilizer?

Re:Childish (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796361)

Where I grew up in Ohio, in a dead flat plane in the upper 25% of the state, the water treatment plant on one end of the town seemed to feed the creek through downtown which seemed to feed the reservoirs where the town's fresh water came from. Most communities not on a major water way probably are recycling with a drip through the ground step...

Re:Childish (2, Insightful)

pi_rules (123171) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796453)

In fact, when I first read about it I was rather surprised that the ISS wasn't recycling urine already.

Same here.

Isn't it pretty much the safest source of drinking water? You only need something that can handle things that are already in the bodies of the astronauts. We can safely assume none of them have any nasty viruses in them, and I'm pretty sure we don't have bacteria in our own urine, so you're down to getting the sodium and urea out of it I guess.

If you want to impress me (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795939)

turn today's brownies into tomorrow's brownies

Re:If you want to impress me (5, Funny)

Bicx (1042846) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795975)

McDonald's uses a similar process to create their hamburger patties.

Re:If you want to impress me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796169)

plant grass in dirt
add brownie 0.1
grow... with photonic energy(ask at science class)
feed grass to cow
milk cow
churn cow pee
make brownie 0.2
continue ... - woot: new space program

Oh - drink distilled yeast pee, it's more fun!!!

disgusting? (5, Insightful)

pescadero (1074454) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795955)

Why is that so disgusting? All the water you drink was probably pee at some point anyway.

Re:disgusting? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796027)

For what value of probably? There are the Oceans, which are rather poorly described as 'big', competing with time, which is poorly described as 'long'. Throw in a few trillion chemical reactions and things get interesting.

Re:disgusting? (2, Interesting)

frieko (855745) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796341)

If life has had enough time to fill the air with oxygen, it's had enough time to fill the oceans with pee.

Re:disgusting? (1)

Draek (916851) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796275)

Why is that so disgusting?

Because no mechanical system is completely fail-proof.

Re:disgusting? (1)

Xaria (630117) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796487)

You might want to stop drinking water then ... because these systems are generally BETTER than your local water purifying plant. And THAT water has passed from farm to city ... cow dung in your water anyone?

Awww come-on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25795967)

Its a piss take!

Recycling too far? Heck no (4, Insightful)

Titoxd (1116095) | more than 5 years ago | (#25795997)

Although it makes for a nice Beeb quip, no, it is not too far. Sending water into low-Earth orbit is not cheap (a launch delta-V of ~ 9 km/s) , and sending it to other places like the Moon and Mars is even more expensive. That's why it is necessary to begin testing and using this technology, where it is possible to actually send replenishment water in case something doesn't work properly.

Re:Recycling too far? Heck no (3, Funny)

ArcSecond (534786) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796289)

Your rational response is too much for the morons in the mainstream media and (unsurprisingly) Slashdot submitters/editors to parse.
Try to keep your analysis to something a little more apropriate for a grade 3 class, please. I mean in a story that is about conserving resources, ensuring safety, and pushing humans-in-space technology forward, how are you going to draw attention to your story if you don't pander to bathroom humour and sexual innuendo?
We don't need your kind around here, elitist.

Taking recycling too far (5, Funny)

KenMcM (1293074) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796009)

I'd be worried if they were attempting this and they didn't take the recycling far enough.

Re: And for this bright idea... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796021)

I strongly suspect the $250M price tag includes the cost of installation. At around $500M per trip the shipping costs are astronomical!

closed eco-systems (4, Interesting)

irtza (893217) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796035)

Earth is also a closed ecosystem where we breath in the burnt remains of food ingested by our neighbors, where tap water is derived from the same lakes and streams that animals use as public toilets. Just because the filtration occurs further away and uses some natural bedrock, doesn't make it any different.

Once you have just steam, it can no longer be considered urine, so drinking water is made from condensed steam

I for one plan on no longer partaking in this twisted backwards environment. Long ago I employed the oil companies to convince the ignorant masses to emit large quantities of CO2 - in an elaborate plot to raise global temperatures and melt the pristine icecaps which I will then route into my drinking water. Furthermore, I will destroy this insane ecosystem that exists in this evil urine drinking manner. You may wonder why I am willing to so freely say this, but what can you do about it? What can you do! mu-hahaha.

anyone know what we were talking about?

Yeah, well (0, Offtopic)

slummy (887268) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796051)

My buddy pissed in a beer bottle and capped it off -- left it in my basement for 2 months. I forgot that it was piss and took a large swill, needless to say I was puking piss for the next hour.

Re:Yeah, well (3, Funny)

hotdiggitydawg (881316) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796111)

How do you know it wasn't actually Budweiser?

Re:Yeah, well (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796215)

How do you know it wasn't actually Budweiser?

Because he only puked for an hour!
 

Good lord, check out the name of pundit who has (1, Interesting)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796085)

given the seal of approval for this pee thing - 'Astronaud Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper'.

im not sure which fuckin reality im in, the one i know, or an alternate sci-fi universe.

Re:Good lord, check out the name of pundit who has (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796209)

Or, maybe the one you know is an alternate sci-fi Universe...ever think about that? (Yes, as a matter of fact I AM trying to make his head explode. Should be hilarious)

Had a glass of water at Lake Tahoe CA? (5, Informative)

n76lima (455808) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796105)

The waste water treatment industry has 3 levels of treatment here on Earth. Primary was what was done in the 60's and before (if any treatment). Solids were ground and held to allow bacteria to digest it (the septic tank method) and it was dumped in the river to dilute it for downstream, with a shot of Chlorine. Then secondary treatment came online in the 70's and later, which is what most municipalities do today, where the solids are filtered out by vacuum or pressure filters and burned or buried, but you'd still be able to tell that the chlorine treated effluent was far from potable.

Finally there is tertiary treatment, which yields water so pure you could drink it (disgusting as it might seem), and this is what is implemented at locations such as Lake Tahoe CA. The water flowing out of the waste water treatment is cleaner than that in the lake itself, after the calcium filtration, etc. There are also de-nitrogenation and de-phosphoration processes to "scrub" the effluent of excess Nitrogen and Phosphorus.

How did you think the Mission to Mars was going to supply water to the crew? Certainly could not tanker enough fresh water to make the multi-year trip to Mars AND BACK.

Re:Had a glass of water at Lake Tahoe CA? (1)

CeePhour (978089) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796255)

I'm from there, and you are correct. I can not handle the water anywhere else. Everywhere I've had the water since living there is undrinkable compared to the crystal clear water available there. It has cost me a fortune in additional filters and such to get me by.

Great achievement... not. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796115)

Yay, we managed to spend $250M by prioritizing sterilized water in space for use by a terrifyingly small number of astronauts!

So what's next? Wait, I have an idea! How about bringing safe drinking water to the tens (of hundreds [of thousands?]?) of millions of people right here on our own planet's surface who don't have access to a fresh water source?

First-world populations piss me off. Pun unintentional.

blind taste tests? (5, Funny)

JimboFBX (1097277) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796153)

"Here I'll put a blind fold on you and.. there you go, ok now drink this delicious fluid." "Hmmm its water, but it doesnt taste like tap water, it tastes filtered. Aquafina?" "No, pee" *PHHHttt*

Electronics wholesale (-1, Offtopic)

papayaone (1409535) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796163)

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Kryten: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796165)

Does it taste like Dutch lager?

overheard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796181)

"Why would I want to add pepper to my coffee?"

"Boy these experiments they gave us are pretty lame, I doubt scientists will learn anything... say... this coffee is really bad."

"Congratulations Mr. Simonyi, you are now our solar system's only known machine for turning yesterday's recycled coffee into code."

All water used to be pee (2, Informative)

imneverwrong (1303895) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796237)

Urine [wikipedia.org] is water with stuff dissolved in it. Remove the solutes, and you get water again, which is all that this process is doing. There is nothing special about it, nature has been doing this for a long__________ time, as has the republic of Singapore [wikipedia.org]

Re:All water used to be pee (1)

linj (891019) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796391)

Urine is water with stuff dissolved in it. Remove the solutes, and you get water again, which is all that this process is doing. There is nothing special about it, nature has been doing this for a long__________ time, as has the republic of Singapore

Indeed. I've lived in Singapore for some 12 years and I've got friends who actually prefer the taste of bottled NEWater (distilled human waste, if you must) over the tap water. That said, the tap water in some regions is already supplemented by NEWater, so the difference isn't so clear anymore...

That said, water in Singapore is much more potable than, say, the LA area where I'm living now.

so does it just filter? (1)

mcfatboy93 (1363705) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796239)

that thing better remove the caffine from yesterdays coffee or there are going to be a few problems with the astronauts.

Extend shuttle life!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796243)

[W]ith the space shuttles due to retire in two years, NASA needed to make sure the station crew would have a good supply of fresh water.

<rant>
Slightly off-topic, but retiring the shuttles is nonsense. Why can't NASA extend the life of the shuttle like it did for the mars rovers, since no replacement vehicle is available?

That would have saved $250M.
</rant>

Just like Singapore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796253)

If you want the cleanest water Singapore has to offer then heavily treated sewage is the way to go.
It's actually a brand-name drink.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NEWater

Already featured in Crichton's "Congo" (1980) (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796257)

"This is our advanced technology unit" she said, lifting up a small backpack. "We've developed a miniaturized package for field parties; twenty pounds of equipment contains everything a man needs for two weeks:food, water, clothing, everything."

"Even water?" Elliot asked. Water was heavy: seven-tenths of human body weight was water, and most of the weight of food was water; that was why dehydrated food was so light.
But water was far more critical to human life than food. Men could survive for weeks without food, but they would die in a matter of hours without water. And water was heavy.

Ross smiled. "The average man consumes four to six liters a day, which is eight to thirteen pounds of weight. On a two-week expedition to a desert region, we'd have to provide two hundred pounds of water for each man. But we have a NASA water-recycling unit which purifies all excretions, including urine. It weighs six ounces. That's how we do it."

Seeing his expression, she said: "It's not bad at all. Our purified water is cleaner than what you get from the tap."

"I'll take your word for it."

Who did the alpha testing? (1)

rossz (67331) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796261)

Think about it. I'm sure they had to try a bunch of times to get it to pass the taste test. Who volunteered to test it? How much were they paid?

They couldn't hire winos since you could give them pure, unpurified urine and they'd say it was an excellent vintage.

A very necessary step (4, Interesting)

sdaemon (25357) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796277)

If we're to survive as a species, in the long run, we have to get off this rock. Permanently. And unless we perfect some form of cryo-sleep or faster than light travel (possibly even if we DO perfect those), we're going to need some means of recycling our own waste products into usable substances.

I've been in situations where the only water available for drinking also happened to be the local wild animals' mudhole. Animal urine and fecal matter were most certainly present, but there was no other water for miles in any direction. So it was scooped up, run through a rag to skim off any solids, run through an activated charcoal filter to purify it, pumped full of iodine to kill any microbes that might have survived the charcoal filtration, then turned into koolaid to mask the taste. Survival situations will do wonders for changing what you are and are not willing to drink. I was fortunate that I had all that equipment for purification. Those living in third world nations don't have the option of stocking up at the local REI.

And I imagine space travelers heading for outer worlds, asteroid belts, or other star systems will have their options pretty limited as well :)

On the other hand... (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796283)

They should have included Zima and Baby Duck. The astronauts would have been begging for unprocessed urine as an alternative.

Time saved. Money saved. Mars, here we come!

Get over it... (0, Redundant)

actionbastard (1206160) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796297)

For cryin' out loud. The water that we all drink today, was waste from an untold number of lifeforms that have come before us. With this device, NASA is doing in a few hours or minutes what the Earth does in about ten-thousand years. The only thing repulsive about it is its 'immediacy'.

Not that exciting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796303)

This has already been happening in different parts of Australia for years due to serious lack of water problem.

In case you're squeamish (0, Redundant)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796313)

... just consider the fact that all the water on Earth has been through at least one animal at least one time. It's ALL urine.

You may squeam at will.

I hate to tell you... (0, Redundant)

vanyel (28049) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796329)

...but your tap water is recycled urine too, it just happens to be a mostly natural process...

Who's the cretin who failed basic chemistry? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796347)

That headline is retarded. It was not "urine" which passed the test, anymore than it is sewage which you drink every day.

oh the pain!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796363)

...too.. many... jokes... can't.. hold...on......

Really... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796393)

Is NASA taking the piss?

in Soviet Russia..... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796395)

well, you drink it as urine.

As others have said, you are already doing it (1)

rahvin112 (446269) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796397)

Contrary to what some of you might think when you drink tap water there is a very high likely hood it's been processed from the wastewater of others.

Unless you live at the top of water supply chain (the literal top of the mountain) another city used your water source and discharged it's sewage back into it before you got it. To put it bluntly, everyone is downstream and you are drinking the wastewater of the cities upstream from you.

Just because it flowed in a river or seeped into the ground and was pumped out doesn't change the fact that you are already drinking processed waste water. The best part is the guys in space are going to be drinking a known source. The stuff you drink has mine runoff, animal feces and industrial waste along with acid rain.

The astronauts water will be cleaner than the stuff you drink. Especially if you are stupid enough to drink water bottled water.

haiku (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796413)

haiku

flask of ripe urine
pressed to dead bsd lips
bsd drink up

Heidemarie - Are U listening? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25796465)

You can drink my bodily fluids anyday!

Stilsuit (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 5 years ago | (#25796467)

They recycle body waste on Arrakis too...

Liet-Kynes: Urine and Feces are processed in the thigh-pads.

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