Friday, May 3, 2013

A New & Improved Way to Make Coffee…in Space!

Coffee in Space_CoffeeCow
Would you believe that one of the biggest complaints astronauts have when they return to Earth is about the not-so-tasty coffee they had to drink while in space? Imagine not being able to choose how to make your coffee. Having plain, black coffee can be delicious, but not everyone prefers their coffee that way.

We have it pretty easy on Earth - we can make our coffee just the way we like it. We can even make every cup of coffee taste completely different from the last cup if we like. And with the brewing technology of single serve coffee machines, the possibilities are endless.

Making a custom cup of coffee in space was not a possibility…not until now! Students at the Rice University have discovered a way to make a delicious cup of coffee with as much cream and sugar as you like.

According to an article on, students at Rice University devised a plan to upgrade space coffee, allowing astronauts to mix their coffee however they like using a 3D printed roller and a couple of pouches. The students needed to make sure that the components of their plan stayed lightweight, had a long shelf life, and had zero liquid leaks. Their idea for new and improved space coffee met all the requirements/restrictions and (most importantly!) achieved the goal – a great cup, erhm, pouch of coffee.

“It’s kind of a dream, I mean, it’s not…not a lot of teams get to have the ability to make something that gets used by NASA,” said one Rice University student involved in making this coffee dream a reality.

Here’s an in-depth explanation of how the system works: 

Astronauts are just people, too! People in spacesuits who love a great-tasting cup of coffee, made their way.

Do you have coffee-related news to share? Please let us know in the comments below!

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