The International Space Station is getting a real Italian espresso machine. Astronauts of all nationalities — but especially the Italians — have long grumbled about the tepid instant coffee served in pouches and drunk with straws 260 miles above Earth. Italy’s century-old coffee maestro Lavazza teamed up with a Turin-based engineering company, Argotec, and the Italian Space Agency to improve coffee conditions aboard the orbiting outpost. The pouches and straws aren’t going away, but at least the brew will pack some zero-gravity punch.
How cool is that? I’ll get to operate the first space espresso machine!
Tweet from Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti
The specially-designed-for-space espresso machine is dubbed ISSpresso — ISS for International Space Station. Its launch next year from Wallops Island, Virginia, is timed to coincide with the six-month mission of Italy’s first female astronaut, Samantha Cristoforetti. The 37-year-old fighter pilot and Italian Air Force captain will fly to the space station in November aboard a Russian capsule.