How to make espresso in space: ISSpresso to deliver astronauts' caffeine fix on board the ISS
Specially-designed espresso machine has been modified to cope with the microgravity on board the International Space Station
Monday 16 June 2014
For all the hundreds of millions of pounds spent designing, building and maintaining the International Space Station it seems that up till now the astronauts on board have been missing one thing: a decent cup of coffee.
Thankfully, this November the ISS will be getting a proper caffeine fix in the form of the ISSpresso: a specially-designed machine created by Italian coffee manufacturer Lavazza and aerospace specialist Argotec that is capable of producing an “authentic Italian espresso” in space.
The ISSpresso weighs 20kg and includes “back-ups of all the critical components,” with a heavily-modified design tackling the unique problems of making coffee in a microgravity environment as the ISS hurtles through space nearly 400km above Earth.
The plastic tube that normally delivers water in coffeemakers has been replaced by a steel tube capable of resisting pressures of over 400 bar to ensure that no liquids escape and the final product is served not in an espresso cup but in a sealed plastic pouch that lets the astronauts suck up their morning shot with a straw – rather than chase it around the zero G ISS.
For similar reasons the ISSpresso doesn’t grind its own beans – and instead uses a capsule system capable of producing “not only a regular espresso, but also a caffè lungo or hot beverages, such as tea, infusions and broth, so that food can also be rehydrated.”
The creators of the ISSpresso say they hope the machine will become a social hub for the space station’s international crew, creating a “venue for getting together, chatting and relaxing”. The machine will be delivered in November this year by Samantha Cristoforetti – the first female Italian astronaut in space.
Life & Style blogs
Nokia no more: Microsoft drops once-ubiquitous mobile name – in favour of its Lumia brand
Fake goats’ cheese found in supermarkets
Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
Uber France apologises for sexist promotion offering men free rides with 'incredibly hot chicks' as drivers
Hate your email? Google knows: its new app promises the earth (and a manageable inbox)
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Marijuana use by teenagers does not result in a lower IQ or worse exam results, study finds
- 3 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 4 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£300 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: SSRS Report Developer – 3 Mon...
£32000 - £39000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Ashdown Group: Generalist HR Man...
£25000 - £30000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our large organisa...
£22000 - £24000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: IT Support Engineer (1st...