17 October 2008

Caffeine Base Here: The Coffee Has Landed

We all know I love coffee, if this is something new to you, click the linky bit back there that says 'I love coffee'. It's rich and dark and warm and fills you with energy AND it's been shown to fight disease (google for the Italian research on it). I love it so much that I don't even milk-up my espresso anymore in mornings, it's a 4-shot americano for me.
My title is about more than the elevatory effects of God's Beverage (it's beans and water, it's natural!). Anyone who's known me for more than 2 hours knows that a dream of mine is to be an astronaut. When it comes down to it, there have been 2 things really keeping me from going after this dream:
  1. I hate cramped spaces
  2. the coffee in space is crap
One down, my friends! From the Universe Today post:

"Franklin Chang-Diaz, a veteran NASA astronaut who spent a lot of time on the International Space Station (ISS), knows all too well the taste of really bad microwaved space coffee. So, in an effort to make life a little better for the current astronauts in orbit, Chang has asked two engineering students to design a machine that can percolate fresh-ground coffee in space…"

They've done just that. The process is apparently secret, but I can think of a few ways that might work, like sealing the coffee and the hot water in a bladder and swishing them around by manipulating the bladder (like a balloon - and then something bad happens!), then you squeeze/suction the now delicious coffee out of the bladder (BLADDER) , through a filter, and into your Astro-CapriSun Coffee cup.
Given my track record for developing apparati and solutions to problems that are more complex than need be, there's likely a much simpler solution, but I think that would work.
Time to run, I have coffee to drink.
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