Our Beach Showers Are Going to the Moon!

Well, kind of.

In actual fact, our Beach Showers have been selected to act as portable showers for a groundbreaking, first-of-its-kind Caving Analog Mission: Ocean, Earth, Space (CAMões) expedition taking place from 22nd - 28th November in Natal Cave on Terceira Island in the Azores, Portugal.

What is the Caving Analog Mission: Ocean, Earth, Space (CAMões)?

The CAMões mission is a unique and innovative project that brings together scientists and researchers from different fields to conduct critical geology, soil health, water, and climate investigations that contribute towards practical solutions for problems faced within the areas of climate change and space exploration.

The expedition serves as a learning experience, helping future space explorers gain knowledge and prepare them for real missions, providing valuable insights on how to navigate and operate in similar operations in the future.

Who are the scientists involved?

The analog crew includes Helder Chaminé (Portugal), Yvette Gonzalez (USA), Aidyl Gonzalez-Serricchio (USA), Rui Moura (Portugal), Paul Niel (Austria), Ana Pires (Portugal) and Pedro Marques-Quintiero (Portugal).

Why "CAMões"?

The naming of this mission to create the abbreviation CAMões is no coincidence.

It's actually a tribute to the famous Portuguese poet Luís Vaz de Camões, who wrote the epic poem "The Lusiads". A contemporary of Shakespeare, Camões wrote this poem to recount the achievements and discoveries made by Portuguese explorers during the Age of Discovery, and hence, the connection to space exploration.

You can learn more about CAMões, the mission and the team by checking out their Instagram page.

How long will it run for?

The entire mission will last for 7 days, with the team of seven on-site researchers (supported by a Mission Control team of four people) staying overnight inside a cave for that duration.

As the team will be totally isolated underground during that time, they'll be able to carry out training and research activities for the entire week with limited access to the outside world.

Why Natal Cave in the Azores?

The Azores is a volcanic archipelago located in the North Atlantic Ocean, known for its unique and diverse geological formations. Belonging to Portugal, it's one of the most beautiful and fascinating island chains in the world (as our favourite Portuguese man, Luis, can testify to)!

Beyond being a great place for vacation and Instagram photos, Natal Cave on the island of Terceira was selected due to the fact that it offers the perfect environment in which to simulate missions to the Moon.

Where do our Beach Showers come in?

As you can probably imagine, a cave isn't exactly equipped with modern amenities like showers. And given that the researchers will be staying overnight for an entire week, maintaining proper hygiene is crucial to the success of the mission.

That's where our Beach Showers come in - providing a practical and effective solution for shower facilities without any need for plumbing or water connection while also being low-impact in terms of environmental footprint.

How will our Beach Showers contribute to the mission?

In this Moon scenario, schedules are implemented to plan out the astronauts' days. The daily routine includes designated time slots for "hygiene" activities, such as using our portable, pump-operated Beach Showers as a shower.

With two showers available, one is assigned for men and the other for women.

Currently, a system is being considered where each person has limited water and time to take a shower individually, with individuals encouraged to document their reflections on water conservation and how the limited water availability impacts their practices.

In addition, our Beach Showers will also be used to aid in the washing of dishes and cups after meals, washing hands, cleaning rocks and as safety showers, thereby eliminating the risk of cross-contamination and helps maintain a clean and hygienic environment within the cave.

The aim is to provide a sense of comfort and familiarity by incorporating small activities like using a showerhead - a seemingly ordinary experience on Earth that can make a significant difference in the overall human experience once in space.

Stay tuned for the mission debrief

We're beyond stoked to be a part of this unique mission and can't wait to hear all about the experiences of the researchers and their use of our Beach Showers.

Stay tuned for the mission debrief, where we'll bring you all the juicy details and insights from CAMões! And who knows, maybe one day, our Beach Showers will actually make it to the moon. So keep an eye out for that too and follow the CAMões team on X for more updates.