More than 50 years of NASA expertise is going into the design of modern spacesuits that will protect and support astronauts as they reach iconic heights during forays in low-Earth orbit, the Moon, and worlds beyond. The agency is partnering with commercial providers Collins Aerospace and Axiom Space to provide next-generation spacesuits perfectly suited to NASA’s expanded mission portfolio.
NASA astronauts have performed spacewalks outside the International Space Station for maintenance and upgrades while wearing the Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) spacesuit design that debuted during the Space Shuttle Program in the 1980s. While the EMU spacesuit has far exceeded its planned design lifespan, NASA is eager capitalize on advanced spacewalking capabilities to achieve increasingly complex exploration goals. The new suits, which act as “personal spaceships” for the astronauts, will benefit from cutting-edge technologies that were not available these decades past, such as improved mobility and innovations in life support systems.