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Apollo Suit Convolutes

Scans courtesy Ulli Lotzmann.
Last revised 28 June 2008


Torso-Limb Suit Assembly (TLSA)

Adapted from Section VI.6 in NASA SP-368, Biomedical Results of Apollo:

The torso-limb suit assembly, which was worn under the familiar, white Integrated Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment (ITMG), consisted of that portion of the Pressure Garment Assembly (PGA) which encompassed the entire body with the exception of the head and hands. The torso portion was custom sized and the limb portions were graduated in size and were adjustable to accommodate individual crewman limb lengths.

The pressure-containing bladder of the TLSA was a neoprene-coated nylon fabric. Directly over the bladder outer surface was a nylon restraint layer that controlled the conformal shape and provided structural support to the bladder. Dipped rubber convoluted joints were located at the shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, and ankles, to permit movement with a minimum expenditure of energy. Restraint cables or cords sustained axial limb loads during pressurized operation and prevented ballooning of the convoluted joints.

The arm assembly had a bearing to enhance rotational movements above the elbow. The PGA boot, which was connected to the torso-limb suit, was sized to the individual crewman's foot and had an ankle convolute which permitted ankle extension and flexion movements.

A convolute was added to the waist of the A7LB suit (below right) to allow the lunar surface crewmen to sit on the Lunar Roving Vehicle.

Torso-Limb Suit Assemblies

The A7L TLSA (left, NASA S71-2537) was worn by all crewmembers prior to Apollo 15 and by the Apollo 15-17 Command Module Pilots. The A7LB TLSA (right, NASA S71-2533) was worn by the Apollo 15-17 LM crews. An important difference between the two versions is the inclusion of a waist convolute on the A7LB (right), which allowed the Apollo 15-17 lunar surface crews to sit on the Lunar Roving Vehicle.  It also made running and kneeling easier.

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