CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla .– After spending nearly three days in space, SpaceX Inspiration4 the crew may have more appreciation for the facilities here on Earth – namely, the toilets.
SpaceX’s all-civilian historic mission, which launched on September 15 and landed successfully on Saturday, September 18, went off without a hitch except for a minor glitch with the Dragon’s toilets on board.
“It was a very clean mission from start to finish,” SpaceX’s Benji Reed, who heads human space flight programs, said at a post-flight press conference on Saturday night. “We had a few issues that we worked on, we worked something on the waste management system, but it worked [out] well and, you know, the crew were happy and healthy. “
Details are still scarce on what happened with the space toilet, but the anomaly was with its exhaust fan, according to Reed. The suction fan is responsible for waste disposal.
Video: Landing! SpaceX Inspiration4 crew back on Earth
Related: Inspiration4: SpaceX’s historic private space flight in photos
Historically, the crews who boarded the Dragon were in transit to the International space station and therefore only stayed in the spacecraft for 24 hours or less at a time. The facilities were probably more used during the Inspiration4 mission, since this crew lived inside the Dragon capsule for about three days.
The dragon’s toilet is located near the nose of the craft, which is also where the dome window can be found on the Inspiration4 capsule. (The cupola replaced the docking mechanism that other Crew Dragons use to connect to the space station.)
According to Reed, the forward hatch had to be closed while using the facility, preventing a crew member from looking out the massive window while going about their business. This means no panoramic view of Earth from space for astronauts using Dragon’s toilets, a possibility mentioned by mission commander and financier Jared Isaacman before the flight.
However, the experience of using the Dragon Space Toilets remains a mystery with no details of the crew members yet being revealed.
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