Astronauts are intelligent and exceptionally brave but they are not superhuman, they still have to poop and pee. NASA needed a more serious bathroom-break plan but the solutions to this problem were not easy. After the Apollo missions ended in 1975, engineers described defecation and urination are serious problems of space travel. NASA started giving astronauts some urination equipment but the problem is not completely solved.
Now the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has thrown a challenge to the global community. Those who have some innovative concepts for compact toilets that can be functional in both microgravity and lunar gravity can send to NASA and the best idea will win more than Rs. 26 lakh. The US space agency is planning to return to the Moon and many activities like providing shelter, equip, and otherwise to support future astronauts are in progress. Astronauts consume food and they urinate and defecate in microgravity and lunar gravity, so they need a toilet that has all the facilities like that of ones here on Earth. Just know about the 'Lunar Loo Challenge'. Here is the tweet made by HeroX.
Just launched: the Lunar Loo Challenges! Be a part of history by designing the toilet astronauts will use during future missions on the moon & Mars. Learn how NASA is #crowdsourcing human waste disposal concepts & how you or your kids can get involved: https://t.co/o15GxUMVM9 pic.twitter.com/wI7Gae2PwY— HeroX (@Iamherox) June 25, 2020
NASA in its statement said that "Although space toilets already exist and are in use (at the International Space Station, for example), they are designed for microgravity only." There are two categories in this challenge - Technical and Junior. The last date to submit designs is August 17. NASA's Artemis Moon mission will carry the first woman and next man on the surface of the moon by 2024.
The Artemis programme is part of the Moon to Mars exploration approach, in which astronauts will explore the Moon and use the experience to send astronauts to Mars. NASA's Human Landing System Programme is the final mode of transportation that will take astronauts to the lunar surface in the Artemis lunar exploration program. NASA experts will work closely with these commercial partners to build their human landing systems, leveraging decades of human spaceflight experience and the speed of the commercial sector to achieve a Moon landing in 2024.