We have completed maintenance on DiscoverMagazine.com and action may be required on your account. Learn More

Scientists Examine Underwear Astronaut Wore for a Month

By Allison Bond
Jul 31, 2009 11:11 PMNov 5, 2019 8:52 AM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

If you think changing your underwear day after day gets tedious, try doing it while orbiting the Earth. What better opportunity is there, then, to test a new type of undies that are anti-odor, anti-bacterial and water-absorbent—and that allowed an astronaut on the shuttle Endeavour to wear the same pair for a month straight. Koichi Wakata, who was in orbit for four-and-a-half months, also tested socks, pants, and shirts that use the same technology. The AP reports:

NASA's space station program manager, Mike Suffredini, stressed the importance of testing new products, especially those aimed at improving astronauts' quality of life. There's no way to wash clothes in space. Station residents simply ditch dirty outfits, along with other garbage, in cargo ships no longer needed that are sent plunging in flames through the atmosphere.

Scientists say they are excited to examine Wakata's high-tech underthings to see how well they worked. For their sake, let's hope that the undies are, in fact, as odor-resistant as the manufacturers claim. Related Content Discoblog: “Handerpants” Claim to Promote Good Hand Health Discoblog: Cooking in Space: Slow, Mediocre, and Dangerous Discoblog: What Happens to Your Underwear in Space?

Image: flickr / hans s

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2024 Kalmbach Media Co.