An astronaut aboard the International Space Station donned a Star Trek outfit to celebrate the arrival of a cargo ship carrying a much needed item – coffee.
Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti donned the uniform on Friday to mark the arrival of the Dragon spacecraft, which brought more than 4,000 pounds of supplies.
Though the visit brought some much-needed items to Cristoforetti, it was caffeine that had the astronaut channeling Star Trek.
— Sam Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) April 17, 2015
While it may not be as prolific as Star Trek‘s USS Enterprise, the International Space Station has been on quite a mission in space. Built more than 15 years ago, the craft has been orbiting Earth at a speed of 17,000 miles per hour ever since. It has been in space for close to 6,000 days, meaning it has circled Earth nearly 100,000 times in total.
“Italian coffee giant Lavazza joined forces with the Turin-based engineering company Argotec and the Italian Space Agency to provide a specially designed machine for use off the planet. Nasa certified its safety.
“It is the first coffee machine able to work in micro gravity on the ISS, where the principles that regulate the fluid dynamics of liquids and mixtures are very different from those typical on Earth.
“It uses a ‘capsule system’ to fill plastic pouches with espresso and other hot drinks such as tea. The machine can also be used to rehydrate food.”
Cristoforetti had reportedly been drinking instant coffee since she joined the ISS late last year. But getting the coffee machine wasn’t exactly the easiest task. The astronaut had to grab the Dragon capsule with the help of a remotely controlled robot arm.
“It’s been just amazing,” Cristoforetti said after successfully catching the cargo pod while the space station was over the Pacific Ocean. “Lots of science and even coffee’s in there, so that’s pretty exciting.”
The space pod that inspired the astronaut to don the Star Trek outfit was created by SpaceX, the private space exploration company founded by Elon Musk. The pod will stay in the space station until May 21, when it will be loaded with experiments and discarded equipment to return back to Earth.
[Image via Twitter]