Scent of Space

Unusual fragrances are nothing new. Think Demeter, an American brand founded in 1996, offering scents spanning the weird to the downright strange: dirt, grass, even kitten fur. But the most far-out perfume to capture our imagination is Eau de Space with the smell of outer space.

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Back in 2008, and upon request, former Nasa scientist Steve Pearce formulated a scent for use during astronaut immersion training. Previous astronauts who had gone on spacewalks described a distinct smell – a mix of gunpowder and ozone, even seared steak – on their suits after returning to the International Space Station.

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Today, Pearce is the founder of Omega Ingredients, and the smell of space is now within our earthbound reach, thanks to a Kickstarter campaign that ended last month. Extremely well- received, it raised US$614,376 (S$841,000) from almost 13,000 backers. Despite this, the Eau de Space team has no plans to produce more after the campaign.

Although its appeal as a fragrance is decidedly ambiguous, there is a noble claim to its launch: to increase interest in science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) fields through experiential education.

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