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Getting the Right Fit

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Grade Levels

Grades 5-8, Grades 9-12


Mathematics, Measurement and Data Analysis


Lesson Plans / Activities

To lessen the risk of exhaustion during a spacewalk, a crewmember’s spacesuit must fit properly. A misalignment of a mere centimeter in the arm length, for example, can lead to aching fingers after a spacewalk of several hours. To avoid the expensive and time-consuming process of creating custom-made suits for astronauts, NASA uses suits with interchangeable parts. Different–sized upper and lower torsos are available. NASA has also created sizing inserts that are added or removed from the restraint layer in the arms and legs to achieve the right fit. Selecting the right combination of inserts insures the best fit possible. In this activity, students experience the complex measurement process used in sizing a spacesuit arm to fit different wearers.
Getting the Right Fit Activity [324KB PDF file]
This document is part of the Suited for Spacewalking Educator Guide.