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28 May, 2008 05:19

Toilet repair brings relief to space crew

The crew of the International Space Station were forced to carry out emergency plumbing last week after their toilet went out of order. Fortunately, cosmonauts managed to fix the problem and can visit the little boy’s room again.

While the repair was being made, the crew had to relieve themselves in the toilet of the Soyuz space craft. Since its capacity is limited, they had to carry out some urgent tinkering to meet the demand.

There was some concern that the breakage could not be fixed until the arrival of the Discovery shuttle next week, leaving the space crew in a bit of a jam. Luckily the crew’s engineering skills were enough to deal with the problem.

In autumn, a brand new lavatory will be installed in the International Space Station, replacing the current one, which has been in use for seven years.

In addition to its normal function, the newcomer will distil water from urine. This will help to address the increased need for fresh water next year, when the ISS is manned by six cosmonauts.