Toilet on International Space Station gets a bacteria-killing upgrade
“Killing bacteria in space is surprisingly hard. Space missions have been plagued by bacterial biofilms that have coated surfaces and corroded equipment.
Now, an antimicrobial metal surface that explodes bacteria on contact has been tested on the International Space Station (ISS), and it may be used in future missions to keep astronauts healthy.
Elisabeth Grohmann at the BEUTH University of Applied Sciences Berlin and her colleagues tested an antimicrobial coating called AGXX®, which consists of thin layers of the metals silver and ruthenium treated with vitamin C.
They affixed metal sheets to a contamination-prone surface: the ISS’s bathroom door. Taking swabs at six, 12, and 19 months, the team found that compared with sheets of stainless steel and silver, the AGXX® surface had a significantly reduced number of bacteria.”