Finally… A Coffee Maker That Defies True Gravity
Filling your best coffee maker with water and fresh grounds perks up the mind and body in the morning. You may take this everyday habit for granted when you think of the sacrifices astronauts make just to start their day.
Even when you purchase your machine based on coffee maker reviews, you don’t have to fight zero gravity at the same time. By the end of 2014, astronauts on the International Space Station will have a little normalcy in the form of fresh-brewed coffee.
The ISS is more than 200 miles above the Earth, orbiting the planet numerous times a day. Although it’s relatively close to Earth’s gravity, it’s still out of reach of true gravity.
Astronauts float in zero gravity along with any loose items. If anything is spilled, such as water from a bottle, it floats in small droplets.
Even the best coffee maker relies on gravity to pull the hot water through the grounds and into a carafe. Scientists had to think of a different strategy to create brewed coffee safely.
Adjusting the Brew Technique
Scientists had to redesign the brewing mechanism to simulate the same process, but with zero gravity influences. They considered air pressure being at zero as well as how liquids move under different pressures.
Overall, they want hot water to still flow through the coffee, but with a controlled and closed system. If you read all the coffee maker reviews in the world, you’ll never find a system quite like the ISS coffee machine.
The resulting coffee actually pours into a strong bag, avoiding any accidental spills into the ISS interior which can damaged almost anything it touches.
Not Your Everyday Coffee Maker
Numerous tests are being made on the space coffee maker to ensure safety under any circumstances. Scientists built several backups into the machine to cover any malfunction issues.
Because of the added hardware, this coffee maker is approximately 44 pounds. In space, however, the weight is negligible. Once it’s in place on the ISS, astronauts will only notice less space where a wall or counter currently resides.
The ISS receives periodic shipments of food and supplies, making this appliance a basic shipping item on the next rocket.
Altering Space Travel with Earth Items
Although it may appear to be a frivolous item sent to the astronauts, the coffee maker is symbolic for human exploration. Creating everyday items to use in space only increases humanity’s chances of populating other planets in the far future.
Scientists could be working on many other basics for space use, from cooking apparatuses to washing machines. The key to space travel is finding a balance between core human needs and luxuries.
With a good cup of coffee, astronauts have a clear mind to experiment and indulge in experiments to better the scientific community. Coffee remains a staple drink for many cultures, binding all of society to possible space exploration and population.
By consuming at least one food that isn’t powder-based, astronauts are trying new ways to move the best coffee maker into space. With stays at the ISS as long as 6 or 12 months, many astronauts are looking forward to this touch from home.
The next time you look through coffee maker reviews for the latest appliance, remember the effort it takes for just the astronauts to drink their morning brew.