Urine Collection Device for Microgravity Environments

Description:

­In microgravity environments, urine collection devices (UCDs) for females, while functional, have several design issues including urine backflow, odor emission, and leakage at the adapter-skin interface. These issues are frustrating for the user, but more importantly could increase the potential for urinary tract infections (UTIs) which may be difficult to treat in outer space leading to kidney infections. Furthermore, current UCDs are expensive to manufacture. Improved urine collection devices are needed, particularly for female crew members. 
 
Researchers at Arizona State University in collaboration with researchers at NASA have designed a novel urine collection device for female crew members which prevents backflow, leakage and may decrease the incidents of UTI. This UCD has a redesigned adapter-connector tube interface to reduce back pressure, a redesigned adapter shape to make it more conformal and increase the applied contact force with the body as well as means to allow for urinalysis results in flight. Feedback from NASA researchers helped better understand the clinical issues facing female crew members in space so that a better device could be designed.
 
This UCD is modeled off of one of NASA’s UCDs, but with improvements to address most of the issues that female crew members face when urinating in space.
 
Potential Applications
  • Urinary collection in microgravity for female crew members
 
Benefits and Advantages
  • Prevents backflow
  • Prevents leakage at the adapter-skin interface
  • May decrease UTI incidents
  • Redesigned adapter shape to make it more conformal and increase the applied contact force with the body
  • Enables urinalysis in flight
  • Materials used allow the bag to be folded without tearing
 
For more information about the inventor(s) and their research, please see
Case ID:
M22-256L
Published:
11-22-2022
Last Updated:
11-22-2022

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