THREE Alicantebased scientists have helped to make a device to convert urine into drinking water for astronauts.

It’s a vital development for future long missions like a journey to Mars or a extended stay on the moon.

José Solla-Gullón, Francisco José Vidal Iglesias, and Roberto Martinez from the University of Alicante’s electrochemistry department have worked with scientists in Puerto Rico to create the converter.

The recycling unit uses nanomaterials as electrocatalysts to make the conversion, which goes through two stages of switching the urine into ammonia, and then into water.

The gizmo is smaller than a shoebox and is now being tested by the crew at the International Space Station(ISS).

José Solla-Gullón said: “It is a real matter of pride for us that something that was created at the University of Alicante is being used on the ISS.”

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