Do astronauts drink each their own pee or is there a common pee container where all pee get collected and processed? It's clear to me that the obtained water must be sterile, but even then, I imagine that people will feel psychologically better in the former case.

  • $\begingroup$ There is only one water recycling circuit (+ systems for redundancy) on the ISS. I remember hearing a Podcast about the water and air systems on the NASA Podcast (Houston we have a Podcast) some time ago if you want to get a detailed description. $\endgroup$
    – user38235
    Jan 4, 2021 at 13:55
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ ...astronauts do not drink urine. $\endgroup$ Jan 4, 2021 at 14:04
  • $\begingroup$ I thought the Russian side had a system that made water for other things from it. Kept getting clogged... $\endgroup$
    – geoffc
    Jan 4, 2021 at 14:44
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ slightly related: Did astronauts on the moon poop in front of each other? $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Jan 5, 2021 at 9:17
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I strongly recommend "Packing for Mars," by Mary Roach. It's a fascinating read into all things astronautical, including human waste collection and recycling, effects of not washing for months, and all sorts of wacky icky things. $\endgroup$ Jan 5, 2021 at 13:05

1 Answer 1


At least on the US side of the ISS, there is one processor for all, the Urine Processor Assembly.

enter image description here

Source: https://space.stackexchange.com/a/26629/6944 (see link for acronymology)


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.