Beam me up potty! NASA spends £18.4m on the most expensive toilet in history

Updated: June 25, 2020

HUMANKIND will soon be able to boldly go to the loo like never before – on a new space toilet developed by NASA at a cost of £18.4MILLION.

The zero gravity lavatory comes with a waste management system that activates after an astronaut lifts the toilet lid and it stores urine to be recycled into water.

NASA is stumping up $23m (approximately £18.4million) for the loo – which is believed to make it the most expensive toilet in history.

However, space boffins say it will save cash in the long run as it will be compatible with future space craft and will “support human long-term, deep space exploration.”


The high-tech toilet  – known as the UWMS (Universal Waste Management System) – is due to go into full service aboard the International Space Station later this year.

AN official NASA document revealed: “The toilet system has a lower mass and volume than prior systems, is simpler to use, provides increased crew comfort and performance, and treats urine so that it can be safety processed by the spacecraft recycling systems. Having a universal, or standardised toilet design that can be adapted for multiple vehicles reduces overall costs.”

The toilet has an air flow suction system that can be used by both males and females. Advanced features are likely to include an improved odour filter, an ergonomic seat and a toe bar on the floor for astronauts to secure their feet.

Melissa McKinley, NASA’s project manager for UWMS, told Newsweek that the new toilet is “the next generation in urine and faecal collection for use in space travel.”

The $23million cost of the project was revealed online by GovTribe, a provider of data on US government contracting.



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