It's probably no surprise that today's astronauts are discouraged from drinking on the job. Space tourists, however, may have different expectations.Great, a beer for space! But it turns out, drinking in space isn't as easy as drinking on earth...
Enter Australia's 4 Pines Brewing Company, which this Saturday will be conducting human experiments in Florida—taste testing space beer. (Related: "'Global Warming Beer' Taps Melted Arctic Ice.")
According to ABC Melbourne, the brewery has made its first batch of suds designed to be drunk on commercial space flights.
One of the enduring problems with eating or drinking in space is related to what's called space adaptation syndrome.OK, maybe I'll stay on the ground.
In orbit, the fluids in your body are no longer being pushed by gravity into your lower half. But your body is still trying to pump things around as if you were standing on Earth.
This leads to excess fluids in the upper body and head, which in turn causes nausea, vomiting, and swelling.
At the same time, brewers made the space beer less carbonated than Earth beer, to counteract so-called wet burps.If possible, they just made drinking beer in space even less appealing. But they understood the problem years ago:
"On Earth when you burp, due to the gravity that's acting on your stomach, the gas and the liquid separate," Mitchell said.
"However, in space ... the gas and the liquid can both come up during a burp."
Of course, NASA was evaluating the challenges of bringing bubbly beverages to space long before the days of Virgin Galactic.I'm so glad NASA was looking forward.
Space shuttle experiments conducted almost a decade ago brewed a small amount of beer in space and tested a device for dispensing carbonated drinks in zero-G.