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Collins Aerospace tested NASA's new spacesuit in microgravity conditions

Collins Aerospace tested NASA's new spacesuit in microgravity conditions
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Generation new spacesuits are planned to be used on the International Space Station.

NASA spent over 15 years developing spacesuits independently before outsourcing the design of space suits in 2022. One such suit was developed by the private company Collins Aerospace and has already been tested in weightlessness conditions.

According to the company, the suit is lighter and smaller than previous iterations of NASA spacesuits. It can also be modified depending on missions and astronauts' body types.

Collins Aerospace tests were conducted on board a commercial aircraft, which provided short periods of weightlessness - approximately 20 seconds, performing a series of maneuvers similar to roller coaster rides. Tasks performed by the tester included entry and exit through a hatch, attaching the suit's boots to a foothold, and so on.

“This design solution really provides a full range of motion within the workspace for which the suit is being created,” said Danny Olivas, a former NASA astronaut who is now Collins' chief astronaut-tester.

The next tests will be conducted in a vacuum chamber to see how the suit works in space atmosphere, as well as in NASA’s Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory - a 12-meter deep pool at the Johnson Space Center in Houston that simulates a microgravity environment for astronaut training in open space.

Collins is also considering the potential use of its suit during spacewalks from the Lunar Gateway station and even on the surface of the Moon. Another NASA contractor, Axiom Space, is concurrently developing its own variation. Earlier, the companies received "cross" orders from the agency, allowing Axiom to study the use of its suit on the ISS, and Collins for Artemis missions.

Source: NASA, Collins Aerospace

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