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General Inquiry: Associate Director, Engineering Directorate
Phone: 281.483.8991
Email: jsc-ea-partnerships@mail.nasa.gov

Mailing Address:
National Aeronautics & Space Administration
Johnson Space Center
Mail Code: EA
2101 NASA Parkway
Houston, Texas 77058

JSC Engineering Web Address:
jsceng.nasa.gov

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Engineering Test Facilities Guide

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Space Station (ISS) Airlock

    ISS Airlock ChamberSpace Station (ISS) Airlock Chamber
    Photo credit: NASA

    Johnson Space Center’s Space Station Airlock chamber was developed to support the International Space Station (ISS) Program for Airlock and extravehicular (EVA) hardware testing, verification/certification, and flight crew training. It is a human-rated, high fidelity, 1-g Airlock facility that provides flight-like simulation of Airlock and EVA operations in pressures ranging from vacuum to 1 atmosphere.

    Like the ISS Airlock, this facility contains two chambers, the Equipment Lock and Crew Lock, which are connected by a common bulkhead. Adjacent to the Crew Lock is a Vacuum Plenum, which is used to simulate space vacuum. Two hatches separate the Equipment Lock from the Crew Lock and the Crew Lock from the Vacuum Plenum. The Equipment Lock hatch is located at the bulkhead connecting the Equipment Lock and the Crew Lock. The extravehicular hatch is located in the Crew Lock at the Crew Lock/Plenum bulkhead. The interior configuration of the Equipment Lock and Crew Lock resembles the flight Airlock while accommodating 1-g operations.

    Specifications:
    Anteroom Entrance: 1.8m x 2.1m ( 5.9 ft x 6.9 ft )
    Observer Lock Entrance: .9m x 1.8m ( 3ft x 6ft )
    Equipment Lock Entrance: .9m x 1.8m ( 3ft x 6ft )
    Equipment Lock Lid: 1.9m ( 6ft ) diameter top loading access
    Crew Lock Hatch: 1.2m x 1.2m ( 4ft x 4ft )
    Crew Lock Lid: 1.9m ( 6ft ) diameter top loading access
    Equipment Lock: 18000 Ft. Alt.(380 torr)
    Crew Lock: 220000 Ft. Alt.(approx. 6 x 10-2 torr)
    Depress/Repress Modes: Automated or manual depress/repress
    Special Support Systems: Includes ISS EVA space suit intravehicular and extravehicular support systems
    Complex Testing: The sharing of a common observer lock compartment with the 20-foot chamber complex provides additional versatility and volumes for more complex potential testing which may require both habitable large volumes and space vacuum simulation capabilities for operations such as EVA.
    Minimum Pressure
       Equipment Lock: 18000 Ft. Alt.(380 torr)
       Crew Lock: 220000 Ft. Alt.(approx. 6 x 10-2 torr)
    Dimensions
       Equipment Lock Volume: 31.1 m3 ( 1100 ft3 )
       Crew Lock Volume: 8.8 m3 ( 310 ft3 )
       Observer lock Volume: 44.5m3 ( 1570 ft3 )

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