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In space, no one can complain about your month-old underwear

By Matthew Shaer / July 30, 2009

Floating in space, and not worrying about odor or fire damage.

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At least one space mystery has now been solved.

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What kind of underwear do astronauts take up into the great unknown? Hanes? American Apparel? Perhaps something in a more athletic fit, like Body Armor? Try again. According to astronaut Koichi Wakata, who is returning to earth from months at the International Space Station, he's been sporting a brand new pair of J-Ware briefs. For the last few weeks. Straight. Without changing.

But don't worry. These aren't any ol' normal kind of underwear. These are high-tech briefs, designed by a team in Japan to be odor-free.

"I haven't talked about this underwear to my crew members," Wakata told The Associated Press, reportedly drawing a big laugh from his colleagues. "But I wore them for about a month, and my station crew members never complained for about a month, so I think the experiment went fine."

Wakata, who is due back on planet Earth on Friday, said the antistatic, flame-retardant underwear made his life in space very comfortable. The J-Wear line is designed by textile experts at the Women’s University in Tokyo, and is said to be made of anti-bacterial, water-absorbent, odor-eliminating material.

"We'll see the results after landing," Wakata said.

And remember, there are no showers on the space station.

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