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Thirsty? Urine Luck.

NASA's water treatment system. Photo: NASA
NASA's water treatment system. Photo: NASA

If we’re going to go on a long-duration mission like one to Mars we’re going to need a few essentials. Fuel, food and water. All this stuff takes up mass. And mass requires fuel to get it from Earth into space.

So what if we could recycle some of these things while en route to Mars? Let’s think about water. Water goes in, water comes out, and you drink it? Ew!

Well, surprisingly NASA astronuats uses a urine recycling system on the International Space Station, but it's only about 80-percent efficienc. Lauren Kelsey, principal investigator and program manager for the water recovery project with Paragon Space Development Corporation, is working on new technology that makes urine recycling more efficient.

Brendan Byrne is Central Florida Public Media's Assistant News Director, managing the day-to-day operations of the newsroom, editing daily news stories, and managing the organization's internship program. Byrne also hosts Central Florida Public Media's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration, and the weekly news roundup podcast "The Wrap."