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How do astronauts wash their hands in space

first_imgWhenever I think about traveling into space I focus on the cool aspects like being able to float about in zero gravity, getting to see the Earth from a new perspective, and experiencing that heart pounding lift off and re-entry when it’s finally time to head home.But the video above reminds us of the mundane tasks that are much more complicated in space. Also, someone has to think about how to solve these problems before the astronauts board the shuttle.In this case, a kid asks International Space Station Commander Chris Hadfield about hygiene, and how exactly the astronauts go about washing their hands.It turns out they have special pouches called No Rinse Body Bath that require the addition of 2 ounces of cold water and 6 ounces of hot water. That creates a “slightly soapy” water solution in the bag, which can then be squeezed out into a ball of cleaning liquid and worked into each hand.The reason it’s only slightly soapy is because water is a very valuable and limited resource on the ISS, so you don’t want to have to rinse your hands with more water afterwards to get rid of the soap. Instead, you just wipe them dry with a towel.What’s most surprising to me about this video is the droplets of water that just fly off as he washes his hands. I thought they’d have to be more careful about where the liquid travels as you don’t want it getting on any instruments and causing an issue.last_img read more

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