Life on the Space Station as a Space Zucchini

Don Pettit, a flight engineer on board the ISS, writes in his space log as a zucchini aboard the station. Here is a sample of what the zucchini have to deal with and see on a day to day basis:

We are starting to have shortages in some of our supplies. This is not unexpected; when you live on the frontier and are extracted from your normal terrestrial soil, it is expected that some items will be in short supply. But you cannot run to the store to buy things. We try to conserve and we try to notify the Big Gardener on Earth when supplies get low, but in spite of this, sometimes shortages happen. Currently we have a shortage of trash bags, disinfectant wipes, and shampoo. We have no more bags in which to put our compost. For us plants, we thrive on compost so this does not pose a problem for us, but for our animal crewmates, this is a big deal. In situations like this, you improvise. We have many spare suitcase-sized bags that protect the scientific equipment during shipment. We are now using those for storing our trash. Gardener said that when he uses the toilet, he can use one disinfectant wipe five times, thus, extending our supply until the next shipment. He keeps his hair pruned short so shampoo in not a factor. Such minor inconveniences are normal here. Gardener says shortages in these supplies are not critical (unless it is coffee.)

I have to agree about the coffee part, but unlike these folks,  I’m pretty sure I would NOT be able to handle some deprivations.

You can read all of Don’s entries at –

http://blogs.airspacemag.com/pettit/

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Filed under NASA, Science

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