Retired NASA astronaut working to solve laundry problem for space missions

A childhood interest in electronics led Joan Higginbotham all the way to the International Space Station.

She joined NASA in 1987 as an electrical engineer at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Twenty years later, she was an astronaut, and blasted into space on Space Shuttle Discovery for a mission at the International Space Station.

Higginbotham is retired from NASA now, and working to tackle an out of this world issue you had probably never thought of – doing the laundry.

"Laundry solutions so that astronauts will be able to do laundry in space which is a huge deal, because right now we don’t have that capability," said Higginbotham.

She’s working with Tide on a solution to not only keep astronauts clean and fresh, but to clean and recycle their laundry water into drinking water.

Learn how it could be a game changer for longer space missions such as trips to the moon by watching the video of Jerry Gretzinger’s story.