This comment suggests that the origional ISSpresso machine may no longer be running on the ISS.

Is that so? If so, can they still make espresso on the ISS? If both are so, with what do they make it?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @user2702772 Apparently, Russians have a samovar in their segment. It would take some Apollo 13 style improvisation to brew the grounds from espresso capsules with hot water from a samovar, but there's hardly a better motivator. $\endgroup$
    – SF.
    Oct 21, 2020 at 23:10

1 Answer 1


ISSpresso is indeed no longer on the ISS

I find it a bit amusing how this question is not difficult because of "how hot drinks are made on the ISS", but because of "what is espresso really?".

Hot drinks onboard the ISS are made by pouring hot water from one of two dispensers, either on the Russian or American side, into bags of powder or concentrate.

As such, coffee can certainly still be had on the ISS, but is it espresso?

The key element of the espresso process seems to be that the liquid has to be "expressed", that is, forced through the coffee beans under pressure.

The ISS hot drinks process seems to be lacking in this aspect. There's no particular pressure applied.

That still leaves one definition problem: Does espresso made on Earth, then dehydrated and put in a bag, stuffed in a Progress capsule, and flown to the ISS count as espresso?

If yes, then "yes they can make espresso on the ISS". If no, then no.

(and in the spirit of good lab practice, setting up equipment not intended to make consumables to make consumables is a big no-no. The ISS follows good lab practices)

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    $\begingroup$ More like "squirting" than "pouring" but +1 $\endgroup$ Oct 21, 2020 at 19:04

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