Spacesuits are a vital part of a mission. Sure, the spacecraft, the orbiter, the lander, and other types of machinery and technologies are essential. But without a spacesuit, a human has no place in space. The spacesuit keeps the person alive in space, despite the extreme conditions in that place. Spacesuits are not only worn outside the spacecraft but also inside it in case something terrible happens, and the cabin loses its pressure.
New and improved spacesuits for future Moon and Mars missions
Spacesuits are quite uncomfortable and bulky because of the built-in equipment that ensures the safety of the astronaut. NASA wants to change that by creating a new type of spacesuits that would allow astronomers to move freely and collect samples more efficiently. All that while in the gravity of the Moon that is six times lower than Earth’s gravity.
NASA engineers hope to make the suits more light and flexible by trying new methods to produce them, such as 3D printing. On top of that, the new spacesuits must suit all types of bodies, as astronomers have different heights and weights.
NASA will test the new spacesuits on the ISS astronauts
Space scientists are on a tight schedule as they have to finish the design and produce the spacesuits until 2024 when the Artemis mission is scheduled to take place. But until then, the spacesuits must undergo hundreds of tests to be sure they are safe. NASA wants to first test them in space on the ISS (International Space Station) and also in low-Earth orbit, before being worn by astronomers on the Moon.
A disadvantage of this plan is that manufacturing space suits is very costly and NASA needs more funds if the agency wants to finish the spacesuits and also be functional by 2023, to prepare them for the 2024 Artemis mission. We can only hope that NASA succeeds in completing all of its projects to make the Artemis mission possible.