The coffee cup for a zero g situation


March 3, 2009

Designer Travis Baldwin's impression of the On-Orbit cup

Designer Travis Baldwin's impression of the On-Orbit cup

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March 4, 2009 Astronauts may have the very cool job of floating around in space, but when it comes to grabbing a caffeine fix, they are faced with the decidedly uncool prospect of drinking out of aluminum bags with straws. Donald Pettit was on Space Shuttle mission STS-126 when he decided enough was enough and came up with the idea of an "On-Orbit Coffee Cup" designed to hold liquid in zero gravity situations.

In Pettit's design, liquid would be held in the narrow bottom of the cup by surface tension. A deep groove in the side of the cup would act as a wick, drawing liquid towards the top where a depression in the lip of the cup would retain beads of coffee - or other liquid.

The design raises questions, not the least of which is: how do you get the coffee into the cup in the first place? (Perhaps Gizmag readers can supply an answer?)

A prototype of the cup has yet to be built, and tested, and one hopes they try it first with cold liquids!

Karen Sprey

Via Tuvie.


you can use a one way valve to inject liquids through the bottom of the cup so a two one way valves are needed. placing one in the bottom of the cup and one on the dispenser. this allows liquids to go into the cup but not out. the reason to place on the dispenser side is so u can regulate the liquids(multiple liquids per dispenser) and it also keeps the liquid from draining in the opposite direction. to make it so that nothing penetrates the hole on the bottom and causing a leak u place a spring loaded cover that sides over the opening when u have finished getting your drink. in an essence u can call this going green because it cuts down on the packaging/plastic(material) used. now as for the second part the dispenser it will be just capped flasks that are filled with the correct amount of water with instant mix when instructed to, then the drink is injected into the cup through pressurizing the flask till it drains. of course the flasks will be cone shaped pointed down to make sure that all of the liquids drain. within the flask is some sort of mixing devise. if worse come to worse they can always pull out the flasks and drink out of them with a straw.

Steven Chang

It looks like a mans sex toy.

Mr Stiffy
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