back to article Brewing in spaaaaace: SpaceX sends a malting kit to the International Space Station

SpaceX landed another Falcon 9, Rocket Lab took a first step toward reuse, and it was handbags at dawn for lunar boffins in this week's curation of all things space. SpaceX sends a malting kit to the ISS, sadly not for thirsty 'nauts After a delay caused by pesky upper-altitude winds, SpaceX successfully launched the CRS-19 …

  1. Danny 2 Silver badge
    Pint

    Three free beers in Edinbra this Thursday

    Brewdog is offering free pints to anyone in Edinburgh who votes in this week's General Election.

    The Aberdeenshire-based craft beer chain are returning with their 'Vote Punk 1 vote = 1 pint offer this Thursday.

    You'll be able to get a pint of Punk IPA, Punk AF, Nanny State and gluten-free Vagabond Pale Ale at one of three Brewdog pubs in the Capital - Edinburgh Airport, at the Cowgate and on Lothian Road. All you have to do is take a selfie outside of your polling station and show it to Brewdog staff on Thursday, December 12th.

    It's obviously an advert, and you are only meant to get one beer, but you don't even need to vote. You can just stand outside three polling stations and take a selfie. If you can master disguises then you could get blitzed for free.

    1. Ugotta B. Kiddingme Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Three free beers in Edinbra this Thursday

      Any brewery that has the chutzpah and customer focus to make their recipes publicly available for home brewers is doing it right and deserves to be supported. I only wish their products were available to buy in MY little corner of Yankville...

  2. Pete 2

    Prelude to Mars

    > gear to test an automated malting procedure to compare malt produced in space with that on Earth for genetic and structural changes.

    After all it's long dry trip to Mars. You've gotta know that when you get there, the microbrewery you sent ahead will perform as required.

    But what is a good name for a Martian beer?

    1. Vulch
      Pint

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      It's not exactly a micro-brewer running these experiments...

      Icon not permitted in some jurisdictions.

    2. macjules Silver badge

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      The chances of any decent beer coming from Mars are a million to one.

      1. Richard 12 Silver badge
        Alien

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        But still...

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: Prelude to Mars

          Did you typoe "Pot still ..."?

      2. jake Silver badge

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        The object isn't to export it, silly ... the object is to produce it for local consumption.

    3. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      After all it's long dry trip to Mars. You've gotta know that when you get there, the microbrewery you sent ahead will perform as required.

      Don't forget the essential brewing by-product, Marmite. Naturally this is why the Brits need to be fully involved in Mars colonisation plans, or at least make sure the Right Stuff* is included in food shipments.

      *Not to be confused with the Other Stuff, aka Vegemite. Both could however be used with some cloth strips to improvise duct tape.

    4. jake Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      "But what is a good name for a Martian beer?"

      Deimos Dark Ale and Phobos Pale Ale, of course. Contrived, but why not :-)

    5. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      If I were sent to Mars with nothing to drink but Budweiser I might pull a Lawrence Oates before too long

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        They aren't sending you to Mars with a specific brand of beer, they are sending you to Mars with the raw ingredients to make beer. Nobody says you have to make a Bud clone. And who would want to ... it's a lot harder than you might think. Simple Ales are a lot easier to make than American industrial lagers. If you don't believe me, try it.

        1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: Prelude to Mars

          Nobody says you have to make a Bud clone. And who would want to ... it's a lot harder than you might think

          You're starting with recycled piss, so you're well on the way already.

          1. jake Silver badge

            Re: Prelude to Mars

            Of course! Every bit of liquid you have ever sipped has been recycled piss.

            1. phuzz Silver badge

              Re: Prelude to Mars

              Some of the ice locked up in glaciers might be old enough that it's not gone through any organisms.

        2. Dagg

          Re: Prelude to Mars

          The problem being to make Budweiser you will need to take rice and birch trees along, forget the barley

      2. Muscleguy Silver badge

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        Depends if it's Czech Budweiser sign me up. The Budweiser brewery in Prague is the only one the Czech govt didn't privatise. To stop Anheiser Busch from buying it and ruining it and the reputation of Czech beer. I haven't been round that one but we did tour the Pilsner Urquell facility in Plzen where pilsnser was invented.

        They show you the gleaming stainless steel modern brewery then they take you down into the laagering tunnels in the chalk and you round a corner and there's a huge wooden barrel on its side with a tap in it and plastic cups. They brew it the old fashioned way, naturally foamy, 'real ale' and it is the very nectar. You cannot buy it you have to go and do the tour.

        Plzen is also famous as it still has the Skoda factory Hitler wanted and which made many of the panzers which were used to start WWII. The old centre has some nice buildings too.

        1. imanidiot Silver badge

          Re: Prelude to Mars

          Plzen is indeed well worth a visit for many reasons. (A lot of the Czech Republic outside of Prague is actually. Prague itself is interesting but a bit of a tourist trap nowadays)

        2. BanburyBill

          Re: Prelude to Mars

          The Budvar brewery is in České Budějovice (the German name for the town was Budweis), not Prague, and is totally worth a trip. They're still lagering everything the produce properly, watching the bottling plant is, as usual, a joy, and there's even a railway depot onsite - much malt arrives by train - so you can get a little Czech trainspotting in as well.

      3. macjules Silver badge

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        Christ, 2 years of canoe sex beer. No thanks.

    6. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Prelude to Mars

      hmmm... Martian beer [I like it already]

      1. Aries Ale [Aries being the Greek version of Mars]

      2. God of War

      3. Red Planet Ale (there's a local brew in San Diego called 'Red Trolley Ale')

      4. Green Martian Malt Liquor

      5. Cydonia Stout

      6. Martian Viking (named for the some of the first space-bots to go there)

      7. Bradbury Brew (named after the author of 'Martian Chronicles')

      8. Space Beer (ok could be brewed in orbit or anywhere off earth)

      (alternate: 'Beer from Spaaaaace')

      9. Rocket Fuel

      10. Alien (any kind of brew, this one-word title just works)

      11. Space Buzz (a vague reference to the 2nd man on the moon, and what beer does for ya)

      12. Kasei Beer (japanese name for Mars is 'Kasei')

      running out of ideas, now...

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        13 Carters Cask Ale

        14 Barsoom Beer

        15 Dejahs Delight

      2. imanidiot Silver badge

        Re: Prelude to Mars

        Not to forget if we go for something stronger at some point: Opportunity Spirits

  3. Spherical Cow Bronze badge

    How come Boeing don't need an in-flight abort test but Space-X do?

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      The most probable reason is that SpaceX are pretty sure it'll work, while Boeing...

    2. Brangdon Bronze badge

      Both had the choice of either more paperwork validating components, or a full test. SpaceX chose the test, Boeing chose the paperwork.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Meh

        I think I prefer an actual test...

        "It worked on paper" --> *DISASTER* --> "oh, crap..."

      2. ZanzibarRastapopulous

        > "Boeing chose the paperwork."

        I think we've seen that story before....

  4. Public Citizen
    Pint

    Barsoom Brewing and Baking.

    Levitating your attitude and your daily bread.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Seriously.

      I'd be far more worried about my yeast mutating than I would be about my grains having problems.

  5. 0laf Silver badge
    Alien

    Spaaaaace beeeeer

    I have nothing constructive to add.

    1. jake Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Spaaaaace beeeeer

      Oh, I dunno ... that seemed rather constructive to me :-)

  6. phuzz Silver badge
    Devil

    Rocket Lab

    "as the stage was slowed to less than 900 km per hour" (emph mine)

    Less than nine hundred kilometres per hour eh? Practically walking pace!

    1. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: Rocket Lab

      Compared to the nearly mach 10 it's doing at MECO, that's positively snails pace!

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Rocket Lab

      yeah but if I did 900kph on the freeway, the fine would be "astronomical"

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Rocket Lab

        yeah but if I did 900kph on the freeway, the fine would be "astronomical"

        That's why you head of to an African desert before you try it.

  7. Muscleguy Silver badge
    Boffin

    Yum

    Malt is used for more than brewing. Mars, Snickers and other such sweet and sticky comestibles use malt to make the toffee/caramel which is why if you read the label it indicates they are not technically gluten free as they contain barley extract. Though I have never had a reaction to it or to drinking beer but then I'm only gluten intolerant, not fully Crohn's and their MMV and I respect that. Not all of the GF products in the supermarkets are for the worried well or those badly advised by 'nutritionists' who will often advise a gluten free diet as the first port of call. I wouldn't wish it on anyone despite being well used to it and adapted and accomplished home baker of. My every other daily bread is baked on the premises (after being fermented, I make GF sourdough).

    Also to be slightly technical since the process also involves brewing but whisky is also made from malt though the whisky industry requires different grades than Mars or Cadbury's will. I know someone who had a student job in the assay lab at Dundee docks testing consignments of malt for quality. English farmers had to be educated as to what strains and how to grow them when the rise in distilleries and output meant Scotland could not supply all the barley necessary.

    Scotland makes a lot of money these days exporting whisky and increasingly gin. Gin can be made from many carb sources but malt is still used, especially here in Scotland where a lot of whisky distilleries also produce gin. If you are starting a distillery the ability to make money quickly selling a gin while the whisky matures* has lowered the entry costs of starting a distillery and they are popping up all over now.

    *To be Scotch whisky the spirit has to be distilled in Scotland and matured in wooden casks in Scotland for at least three years. Many standard bottlings are of course older than this and the age on the label has to be of the youngest whisky in the bottle. The longest until recently Lagavulin was a 16yo. Though they got into trouble with the long term planning. We have lost the knack of long term planning it seems.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Yum

      Hmmm... Mars bars that ACTUALLY COME FROM MARS.

      gotta love it!

    2. imanidiot Silver badge

      Re: Yum

      Do you happen to have a link to your recipe for GF sourdough? I might unfortunately be facing a similar diet change. (Suffering from bouts of IBS, eliminated pretty much all other things I can think of)

      My last attempt at GF bread baking wasn't very successful.

  8. Doctor Syntax Silver badge
    Pint

    In zero gravity how do you get a head on your beer?

    1. MyffyW Silver badge

      Candy came from out on the island

      And, as Lou Reed related, never lost her head...

    2. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Simple take the container, place the part where you want the head to form and place it on the outside then spin the container fast thus creating centrifugal force aka artificial gravity. But make sure you are securely anchored before beginning the spinning action.

      Glad to help.

      BTW I have experience in designing for zero gravity. The eldest some years ago won a place at Space Camp from here in Scotland and had to design something to make the astronaut's lives easier. We came up with a coffee brewer based on a heat source and one way valves.

      I'm not entirely sure how the Italian made machine which was sent up works. Maybe we should have applied for a patent . . .

  9. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921 Bronze badge

    If the brew goes bad there's nowhere to hide and the space station smells like 20 years of canned farts already

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge

      I would have thought that it would be easier in that environment and having to contain everything to keep extraneous organisms out. Also if they keep the beer away from bright lights it won't turn skunky.

      I cringe every time I see a clear glass bottle of whisky sitting in a shop window. Since it starts out brewed whisky is subject to skunkiness as well. Why so many single malts come in boxes. I keep mine in the boxes in a closed cabinet not subject to sunlight except around midsummer when it can come through the skylight and down the stairwell.

  10. imanidiot Silver badge
    Trollface

    "Shot of the interior of the next ISS module?"

    Hah, they'd WISH they had that much space inside the station.

  11. ZanzibarRastapopulous

    SpaceX

    Is that the paedo guy's company?

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