Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) deployed towel technology (and more techie stuff) following a messy toilet leak at the beginning of the month.
NASA reported that the station crew successfully installed a new double stall enclosure within Node 3 of ISS. During the activity, the crew experienced a water leak while de-mating a Quick Disconnect (QD) for the potable water bus. Approximately 9.5 liters leaked. The crew worked quickly to re-mate the leaky QD and soak up the water with towels. An alternate QD was then de-mated in order to continue with the installation.
The new concept, referred to as the Universal Waste Management System (UWMS), includes favorable features from previous designs while improving on other areas from Space Shuttle and the existing ISS Waste Collection System (WCS) hardware. This double stall enclosure provides privacy for both the Toilet System and the Hygiene Compartment. The starboard side will provide access to the existing toilet and the port side will be used for hygiene until a new replacement Toilet System arrives in early 2020.