Dubai: In his latest video released from the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday, UAE astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi showcased his unique ‘wardrobe’ in space.
The ‘Sultan of Space,’ who is on the longest Arab space mission aboard the ISS, took his social media followers on a tour of the unique location which looks like a deep hole amidst a large stack of huge bundles of white bags.
After floating down into the hollow space amidst the bags, Al Neyadi said: “Today, I’ve brought you to a strange place that you may be seeing for the first time.”
He then revealed that he was positioned at the front of the ISS Node 2, which is called the PMA, or Pressurised Mating Adapter (PMA).
PMA is a crucial link between the ISS and the Dragon spacecraft.
“Directly behind me is the Crew-6 Dragon spacecraft,” said Al Neyadi, referring to the SpaceX spacecraft that launched him and the other three members of the NASA SpaceX Crew-6 mission into space on March 2. The Endeavour Dragon docked into the ISS on March 3.
Interestingly, Al Neyadi revealed that the PMA serves as more than just a connection point as it doubles as a wardrobe for astronauts on the ISS. “We use this place also as a ‘wardrobe,’” said Al Neyadi.
What are CTBs?
“It includes bags that are organised by astronauts’ names and labelled accordingly. The bags contain their personal belongings as well as some necessary tools for living aboard the ISS,” he explained. Giving details, the 42-year-old Emirati astronaut said bags of various sizes are used for storing astronauts’ belongings.
“This is called half CTB, which is the Cargo Transfer Bag, and then we have the full, which is 1.0 CTB.”
Pulling out one bag from the bundle, he said: “For example, we use this bag to store some tools that I want to have with me.”
The first thing that he pulled out of that bag was Suhail, the mascot of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC), the agency behind the UAE Astronaut Programme that sent Al Neyadi to the ISS.
“Here is our friend Suhail,” Al Neyadi said as he released the stuffed toy known as “the little astronaut” to float in the microgravity orbital laboratory.
Al Neyadi explained that it is in that bag that he stores his belongings for media appearances. Inside this bag is his spacesuit, along with items meant to provide insights into life aboard the ISS, serving as valuable educational resources.
Sanitary tools to supply of clothes
Moving on to the second bag, Al Neyadi revealed that it contained his personal belongings, including sanitary tools necessary for maintaining hygiene in space.
“These bags are for storing bath products, soap, toothbrushes, razors, and other items related to personal hygiene. There are also tools that I use in my daily work on the ISS.”
Opening another bag, he said it is a full CTB which stores astronauts’ clothes.
The full CTB, he said, can hold a two-week supply of clothes, including t-shirts, socks, sportswear, innerwear, and other essential garments required for their daily routines and physical fitness activities.
“There are also other bags that contain pants, belts, and other items,” he said adding that astronauts have everything they need for their daily lives within the PMA.
He concluded the video that offered a rare glimpse into the daily life of astronauts in space by expressing his hope that viewers will enjoy and benefit from learning more about life aboard the ISS.