– News of May 3, 2015 –
Samantha Cristoforetti was the first Italian woman to go into space, in the International Space Station (ISS). Like most astronauts, she was a bit homesick, and she could not really rely on the food or drinks usually consumed by astronauts to bring her some comfort. But thanks to ISSpresso, an espresso machine specially designed for the ISS, she was the first astronaut in history to enjoy an authentic espresso in space on May 3, 2015.
The Lavazza coffee capsules used in ISSpresso contain the same coffee as those used on Earth, and allow astronauts to drink espresso, long coffee and other hot drinks such as herbal tea or tea. The machine can also rehydrate food. The ISSpresso espresso machine is a technological feat : it offers an authentic Italian coffee to astronauts in weightless conditions, with enormous constraints imposed by NASA and ASI (Italien Space Agency) in terms of safety and operation. For example, the energy needed to operate the ISSpresso must be minimal, the risk of fire initiation must be zero. ISSpresso weighs 25 kilograms.
ISSpresso is a word consisting of the name of the International Space Station (ISS), where it is installed, and the word espresso. This unique machine was designed by the Italian companies Lavazza and Argotec. Argotec is particularly renowned for its expertise in designing food to consume in space, and ensures that their dietary and nutritional contributions are optimal for astronauts in space. The Italian Space Agency (ASI) also took part in this project which required 18 months of development.
Image by NASA.