• Sanjay Manival Raju

Eau De Space: A Perfume that smells of "Space"

The aggressive bid of space exploration began to protect sovereignty by launching satellites into orbits. As the cold war and fear of invasion faded, mankind utilized this newly invented potential to explore a world surpassing our atmospheric layers.

As of April 2020, 566 people went to space at a global scale. Aside from leaving behind things, astronauts brought back rocks, soils, and some spectacular pictures of our planet. Apparently, they brought back a “scent” as well.

This scent has made it back to earth in the form of a perfume- Eau de Space, expected to reach the markets by OCT 2020.

This product is essentially a spin-off from NASA’s project to develop the “smell of space” and create an artificial environment for the astronauts to be trained in. Chemist, Steve Pierce was contracted in 2008 to do the same. He worked closely with astronauts who described the smell as being, smoky, burned, or bitter. While some attributed the smell to, that of gunpowder, raspberries, rum, and even fried steak.

Those are several compounds with unique scents, but in the capacity of a chemist, Steve worked to consolidate these descriptions and re-produce the “smell of space”.

Eau de Space is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds and scale production. It has over 6900 backers and $200,000 pledged as of July 2020. You can pledge $29 to secure one while the MSRP is $49. There are a couple of more pledge options including a $10 to just support this project.

Eau de space and your purchase will not just end in the closet, the proceeds from this traction is aimed at supporting STEM learning for K-12 students (Online school program). Matt Richmond, the product manager calls this experiential learning. Richmond also suggests that, if this gain popularity, they would like to release a new fragrance called “smell of the moon”.

On that note, I ponder if Eau de Space is a disruptive category of perfumes over the already existing ones viz. Eau de Toilette, Eau de Cologne. It is estimated that only 4% of the space has been explored, which includes not just the visits, but the galaxies and stars that have been visible. Intuitively, the further we explore, the newer scents we can bring back.

Perfumes, just as fashion, reflect on your personality. Each person has a choice for fragrances, but irrespective the preference. Eau de space is sure to draw a lot of attention. Would you like to “smell of space?”. That will be an answer not until after a couple of sprays.

However, commercial products such as this can be backed by social and environmental initiatives like the K-12 program here. Through such conscience, we can protect the integrity of large-scale space projects that are of national interest.

Ahead of SpaceX’s plans to commercialize space travel, it seems like Eau de space is the closest spatial entity to be commercialized. Next stop is Mars, which probably will smell like a burnt Tesla Roadster.

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