Science Fiction & Fantasy Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for science fiction and fantasy enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Even though Data does not need food or drink, many times it has been shown that he does consume foods and drinks. What happens to the food after digestion? Given that he was created as a "fully functional android", should we assume that he gets rid of waste in the human way?

share|improve this question
Do we ever see Data eat anything. Occasionally we've see him sample a beverage, but usually he drinks his bio-lubricants. – Xantec Jan 8 '13 at 18:30
@Xantec I've been watching the series and I have a distinct memory of seeing him eat; I don't recall the precise episode, but it would be around the middle of season 2. – Kevin Jan 8 '13 at 18:55
"Data. Sometimes a cake, is just a cake." - However, he's not shown onscreen to actually devour any. This was Season 7, though, so it's not what @Kevin is thinking of. – Izkata Jan 8 '13 at 23:58
Data is invited to Riker's breakfast in, I think, "Time Squared." This episode does occur in Season 2. Though Data isn't shown tasting the eggs that Riker prepared. – user30592 Oct 28 '14 at 2:07
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I always assumed that since the food he digests is replicated it would simply recycle itself, he might even have had a mechanism for it (I recall him saying somewhere that he does have a "stomach").

I'm not sure if I got the idea from reading/hearing about it somewhere though :)

share|improve this answer
Well, he must have some sort of receptacle attached to his mouth as he does imbibe various maintenance fluids. – Xantec Jan 9 '13 at 16:09

He is 'fully functional' and 'designed to be as human like as possible' so I think it's easy to draw the conclusion that he goes to the toilet just like the rest of us...

share|improve this answer
Maybe, but he doesn't need to sleep, which is a big missed check in the "as human as possible" column. So not needing to relieve itself wouldn't be a big deal to over look. – Xantec Jan 9 '13 at 16:07
Well if he doesn't go to the toilet it's got to come out somewhere.... – user11154 Jan 9 '13 at 16:34
He could atomize any waste and breathe it out. – Xantec Jan 9 '13 at 16:35

I seem to recall Data's brain being discribed as "positronic", a possible reference to Asimov's Robot stores.

Based on that, in "Caves of Steel", Daneel Olivaw shares a meal with Elijah Baley. He later opens a section of his chest/abdomen, and removes a plastic bag which he then empties into the recycling chute.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.