It's being called the Lunar Loo Challenge. NASA needs your help to make a better toilet for the men and women going into space. reports that NASA says it wants to return to outer space in the year 2024. There is talk about doing another moon landing and so the toilet has to work on earth, in space, and on the moon. Everyone has seen how cramped the space capsule is, or the space station, or any workspace that an astronaut has to work in so it has to be compact as well..

Herox, who is working with NASA for the design and contest says the actual toilet will be called the "Universal Waster Management System,". That's a really big word, I like loo or toilet better. You could just call it a sh&@#$er, oops, I forget I can't say that word. That might be a bad name.

So, you are interested in designing something, Herox reports the guidelines NASA has put forward, here they are:

  • It has to be able to accommodate the waste of two astronauts for at least 14 days.
  • It has to work in both microgravity and lunar gravity.
  • It can't use more than 70 Watts of power.
  • It can't be smelly.
  • It has to hold all sorts of waste including urine, feces, vomit, diarrhea, and menstrual fluids.
  • It has to accommodate both men and women.
  • It has to flush properly.
  • It has to be quick and easy to clean.
  • It has to be able to flush 500 grams (about 2 cups) of diarrhea in one sitting.
  • It has to be quiet. (No louder than 60 decibels.)

Sounds like you want to do it? There are some other rules too and you can find them here.

NASA tells Herox, don't copy what has already been done, they are trying to change those designs, that's why they are having the contest. If you are the winner it's worth  $20,000, second place is $10,000 third gets $5,000, you have to be 18 years old and submit by August 17th and it has to be a 3D CAD file.

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