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High School Juniors Create 'Flavor Strips' For Astronauts

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the tastes-like-space dept.

Space 23

Cazekiel writes "The sense of taste for astronauts is dulled by microgravity, but four high schoolers participating in the Spirit of Innovation Challenge have come up with a solution: Flavor Strips. They put a little more kick into space-food; from simple salt-and-pepper to Asian spices, astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler, as Myra Halpin, a chemistry and research instructor at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics says of one tale told to her, 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.'"

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Perfect! (5, Funny)

DWMorse (1816016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619191)

I'm sure the next space shuttle crew will really appreci-.... Awww I joked myself sad. -_-

Do they come in Chicken Flavor? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39619231)

or perhaps pussy?

Re:Do they come in Chicken Flavor? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39619447)

Fish flavor. DUH!

cool idea... (2)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619237)

It solves several problems with liquid spices (packaging/density) and dry (imagine salt/pepper dust floating around in 0 G).

I don't know what NASA's current soln is (other than bland food/tube food), but any advancement in making space easier to inhabit is a great one.

Re:cool idea... (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619351)

It is my understanding that one of the more boring elements of 'The Right Stuff'(tm) possessed by astronauts is the ability to subsist for an unlimited time on Mk. IV Standardized Nutritive Paste.

Re:cool idea... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619553)

All of the "spices" are typically already in the food. Think space MRE. and they have their diets controlled so no going off the nut over salting anything.

AS for "hot sauce" you can easily have a hot pepper paste in a tube to apply or eat a small amount and then eat the food. In fact I believe they already have it on the ISS.

Re:cool idea... (2)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 2 years ago | (#39620011)

I don't know what NASA's current soln is (other than bland food/tube food), but any advancement in making space easier to inhabit is a great one.

Those days are long gone. These days it's pouches like MREs, except the food selection is limited - it's difficult to pour or put stuff on food so post-spicing is practically impossible - the best they can manage is rehydrating and heating. Dry powders have a habit of going everywhere and clogging things up. Wet spices just ball up and spashes turn into smaller balls that hide everywhere.

And no crumbly food - about the only bread available is a tortilla.

No more tubes - it's all pouches now.

Re:cool idea... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#39621025)

It solves several problems with liquid spices (packaging/density) and dry (imagine salt/pepper dust floating around in 0 G).

The problem is, those problems are already solved. Liquid spices are in squeeze bottles designed to only let out small drops, and the astronauts trained to use them only close to the food so they don't float about. The quantity carried is small enough that density isn't a big issue. Dry spices are basically not used at all. Hot sauce (a liquid spice) is used in place of pepper, and a salt brine (a liquid spice) is used in place of salt.
 
Not to mention the strips are designed to "melt in the mouth", which means they aren't in the food... and thus are pretty much pointless.

Re:cool idea... (1)

THE anonymus coward (92468) | more than 2 years ago | (#39622155)

The way they handle salt/pepper is that they dissolve the salt and pepper in water, and give the astronauts little bottles of that. Seasons the food in a way that doesn't have lots of little particles floating around.

blotter acid (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619323)

blotter acid is "prior art". Hope they're not planning on patenting it for profit.

This could lead to hilarious practical jokes on the station... yo, could you pass me a teriyaki flavor strip? Hmm... this teriyaki flavor strip has a grateful dead album cover on it ... WTF ...

Aside from drug humor, I think it would be hilarious to print up dozens of "hot pepper strips" on the station laser jet, and feed them to the victim thinking he's lost his sense of taste, then once he's gulping the things down by the dozens give him a handful of the real habenero strips.... This is basically the old "dude bragging about econo-car mileage" practical joke, but done with spice strips instead of a gas can.

(remember album covers? I'm old).

Good thing this wasn't in Japan (2)

Steve Furlong (9087) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619427)

If I'd seen "High School Juniors Create Flavor Strips for Astronauts" in a Japanese news site, I'd have just known panties were involved.

Re:Good thing this wasn't in Japan (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39619767)

I bet they already have "Used Panties" scratch and sniff over there :P

I always wondered why..... (2)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619533)

The space program did not use things like Fruit leathers and food leathers. It's been known to backpackers and camping people for centuries.

a little flavorless gelatin and the "spices" spread out and let dry. it turns into a leather that you can pack easily and use without effort.

What is this? I don't even (2)

xerxesVII (707232) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619545)

"astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler"

Re:What is this? I don't even (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39619665)

To many extra phrases. It is supposed to be,

"astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.' "

Then maybe credit Myra Halpin, a chemistry and research instructor at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, in another sentence.

Re:What is this? I don't even (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39619923)

To many extra phrases. It is supposed to be,

"astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.' "

Ok, the grammar makes sense that way...
Wait, why the fuck would he do that?! 'E's an astronaut, not a bloody dervish! I would think using a syringe or perhaps (if needed) some linear shaking would be more obvious solutions?

Re:What is this? I don't even (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#39619787)

Really?

astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler, as Myra Halpin, a chemistry and research instructor at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics says of one tale told to her, 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.'

Assuming you understand how the comma works, it says:

astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler ... 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.'

That's far from the most broken sentence I've seen in a Slashdot headline.

Re:What is this? I don't even (1)

arth1 (260657) | more than 2 years ago | (#39620147)

"astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler"

Well, clearly using the space traveler is the traditional way of adding more taste to astronautical meals.

On one hand, it seems slightly irresponsible to eat space travelers, even well preserved ones.
On the other hand, he's not human, and we have great tradition for eating other species.
On the gripping hand, he probably belongs to the meat caste.

You've discovered the terrible secret. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39620393)

Do you have stairs in your house?

Great Business opportunity (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 2 years ago | (#39621787)

The reason is that they will be able to sell these to restaurants, esp. fast food ones. Imagine being able to lay a few strips down on your burger and get a salsa burger, or hickory taste. Likewise, I can see fastfood paying good money for this. Now, lets hope that they manufacture it here in America.

I'm spinning myself around (1)

PJ6 (1151747) | more than 2 years ago | (#39624643)

They put a little more kick into space-food; from simple salt-and-pepper to Asian spices, astronauts get to add more taste to their meals without the space traveler, as Myra Halpin, a chemistry and research instructor at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics says of one tale told to her, 'spinning himself around to get the hot sauce out of the bottle.'"

trying to get my head around this terrible sentence

Would you like another lick of my Flavor Strip? (1)

16Chapel (998683) | more than 2 years ago | (#39629631)

I also have some multi-bon joy joys!
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