Coffee Machine for astronauts at ISS

          First week of NASA Studio at RISD

              by Osub Lee, Cameron Absher, Will Zhang 

              Role: Modeling and computer rendering the coffee machine. The duration of this project was 3 days.


How can we deliver the best coffee drinking experience to the astronauts in International Space Station?





The morning coffee routine, whether that be  at home or at work is universally one of the  first things one does. In our design for the ISS Coffee Machine, we took inspiration from both the visceral nature of a French press and the  community generating machine with a coffee pot.



  • Allow for the creation of coffee reserve rather than a  one-a-cup system
  • Have the user participate in the brewing experience  giving them physical control of a component
  • Easy Clean-up
  • Nostalgic elements yet space-age feel



We wanted to create a coffee machine that could also function as a social object for the ISS community. The Mr. Coffee system is a perfect conceptual model because it is already being used as the coffee machine, which gathers people both in the office and living area. Also, we believe sharing a pot of coffee will provide more opportunity for the closed community like ISS to be healthier.

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While I was watching the Youtube video of "Sunita Williams Space Journey Tour," I was intrigued after she said, "Inside of the zero-gravity area, there is no floor nor ceiling, it's very confusing because you don't have a fixed reference position." This made me think "what if the coffee machine could rotate to the user's position in this zero gravity environment?"










Our creation for the ISS is a hybrid French press and a Mr. Coffee system. Able to rotate completely with the orientation of the astronauts, you can make a pot of coffee in zero gravity with ease. Grab the pot and head to the lab and refill your Cosmo-Pot mug with the trigger mechanism on the pot.


We wanted the astronauts to experience and see the process of their coffee getting extruded from the beans.


Extruded coffee goes into multiple plastic pouches inside of the pod.


The Control panel of the Coffee machine has a Power button, buttons for users to choose the amount, and Lock & unlock button for the coffee pot.

These buttons are surrounded by the metal guard to prevent from false triggering from sides


Extruded coffee goes into the plastic pouches that are connected to each other. The coffee pot uses the same mechanism of Febreze spray bottle, but instead of spraying the coffee, it continually squirts the drink on to the surface of the mug as long as the button on the handle is pressed. The reason why we are using a small plastic bags is to use the maximum surface area of individual plastic pouches. Also, astronauts can throw away the pouch after several uses.



1. Insert the coffee pod into tray

1. Insert the coffee pod into tray

2. Press the amount of coffee you want to extrude from the pod

2. Press the amount of coffee you want to extrude from the pod

3. Wait until the Frenchpress is filled up with heated water

3. Wait until the Frenchpress is filled up with heated water

4. Press down the hot water to extrude coffee from the pod 

4. Press down the hot water to extrude coffee from the pod 



from the first design sample