March 25, 2014 by dracs
If there is one thing science fiction has taught me, it is that when you are exploring the final frontier you need to look good for any hot green aliens you might meet.
The spacesuits worn by NASA’s astronauts don’t appear to have changed much in style since the first moon landing, but now they are asking all of us to cast our vote for the design of the next generation of spacesuits.
The new Z-2 suit builds upon NASA’s previous Z-1 suit and features some major advances in the design process:
- First surface-specific planetary mobility suit to be tested in full vacuum
- First use of 3D human laser scans and 3D-printed hardware for suit development and sizing
- Most advanced use of impact resistant composite structures on a suit upper and lower torso system
- First integration of the suit-port concept with a hard upper torso suit structure
- Most conformal and re-sizeable hard upper torso suit built to date
Now the z-1′s design meant that NASA astronauts ended up looking like they were cosplaying as Buzz Lightyear.
This time NASA has asked the internet to vote between three different designs.
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Unfortunately, the final design will not be flying off to space. The z-2 is still in the prototype stages and the chosen design will be featured on the suit as it is tested in different environments, including a full vacuum.
Still, it is really interesting to see the manner in which such things are developing and who knows, maybe one day space will feature people dressed as Buzz Lightyear zipping off to distant planets.
Which one gets your vote?