NASA’s New Spacesuits Combine Technology With Fashion

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NASA yesterday awarded US firm Oceaneering International with the contract for its new spacesuits for the 2015 Orion capsule launch.

The contract is worth $745 million and involves production as well as design, evaluation and testing of a suit that can be customised to meet an astronaut’s requirements at various stages of a mission.

An astronaut will be able to replace certain components with others that are more suited to the task at hand like strolling on the moon.

The current suit is designed for floating in space and does not perform well when walking on the moon. The new suit will be of a lighter weight and will be more flexible. It will need to operate with minimal maintenance for a large number of moonwalks during planned lunar expeditions.

The default version of the new suit (see below) will be used inside the Orion spacecraft during takeoff and landing. It is a less bulky version that will protect the astronauts against unforeseen problems like cabin leaks.


Comments (One Response):

What is the purpose of the dark, um, anatomical shape at the crotch? I’ve never understood why the zippers on the current suits are dark. This is even more strange. Surely the attachment, or whatever it is, comes in white to match the suit.

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