Lead article image

Photo via McKay Savage/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Watch the remarkably simple process astronauts perform to get their coffee fix

It’s way cooler than getting a mocha frapp at Starbucks.


Jam Kotenko


Posted on Jan 20, 2016   Updated on May 27, 2021, 8:22 am CDT

Most people can’t properly function without getting their dose of caffeine in the morning, but for those who have coffee as part of their daily routine, acquiring a cup of java is fairly easy. You either make one at home using hassle-free gadgets or do a coffee run to the nearest shop before heading to work, right? But how do astronauts get their brew? 

You’d think that being stuck in a confined space where anything not nailed to the wall floats around in zero gravity would rule out any procedure that involves getting hot liquid to stay put in a mug, but as it turns out, getting coffee is not entirely impossible when orbiting our planet.

In a short Youtube video, European Space Agency astronaut Tim Peake demonstrates how they prepare a coffee in the International Space Station. First he floats on over to a receptacle where they keep vacuum-packed coffee with cream sachets. He then feeds it into a slot on a wall that injects hot water into the flat sachet, causing it to inflate. Lastly, he inserts a straw into the pack and voila—hot coffee in a bag!

It’s probably not as satisfying as wrapping your cold hands around a steaming mug, but in space, you don’t have a lot of options. Makes you appreciate the simple things, doesn’t it?

H/T Engadget | Photo via McKay Savage/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Share this article
*First Published: Jan 20, 2016, 6:20 pm CST