NASA is Sending Up Ice Cream in Three Freezers to the ISS


Flickr / NASAKennedy

SpaceX pulled off a successful cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station on Monday — plus its eighth rocket landing of the year. Besides the usual slew of scientific experiments and refreshing cache of essentials for day-to-day living, the new payload is lugging something a bit sweeter to the ISS: ice cream!

Actually, there are two versions of ice cream going to the ISS. The first actually is a scientific experiment: The Cosmic Ray Energetics and Mass, which the agency is calling ISS CREAM. Get it?

Yup, it’s a truly terrible pun. But real, edible ice cream is also on its way to the space station, as NASA officials said Sunday in a pre-launch news conference. Gizmodo reports that the ice cream will be stored in three freezers, and available in chocolate, vanilla, and birthday cake, plus ice cream candy bars.

The crew is going to have about one month to finish those tasty treats, because that’s how long SpaceX’s Dragon vehicle will stay parked at the space station. Those three freezers need to be filled up with samples relevant to the scientific experiments taking place on the ISS. Dragon will be taking them back to Earth so that the world’s researchers can dig in and learn a few new things.

Of course, ice cream may not be in the future for astronauts much longer. NASA is [working hard to develop a much more robust food program]( for space denizens who may be spending years of their lives in microgravity. This includes farming vegetables in space in order to create a sustainable form of food.

So enjoy the ice cream while it lasts, astronauts!

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