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Rehydratable Food and Beverage

Missions: All flights prior to STS-44 Atlantis  
First used: April 12, 1981  
Last used: September 18, 1991  
Comment: A full meal for a crew of four could be
set up in about five minutes.

These two food packages, used for training, contain Grits w/Butter and Bran Flakes. The collapsed tube behind them is Orange Drink. Rigid square rehydratable food containers and expandable plastic drink containers like these samples were used until mission durations required a more compact solution (beginning with STS-44). To prepare rehydratable food, crew members would insert the container(s) into the "rehydration station" in the Space Shuttle's galley. A water dispenser with a needle would penetrate the rubber septum and the specified amount of water would be inserted. The container was opened by grasping the center portion of the lid liner with the fingers, piercing it with a knife or scissors and pulling the liner up to aspirate air. While grasping the center of the liner, the astronaut would swing the container in a forward and backward semicircular motion to place its food contents at the base of the container. The inside edge of three sides of the liner was then cut to expose the food.

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