SpaceX, the private aerospace company that recently sent astronauts to the ISS, makes some slick space suits. In the below video, SpaceX’s space suit designers talk about how they make the super-fresh astronaut gear. As well as how the suits are essentially an extension of SpaceX’s entire Crew Dragon vehicle.
Space Suits and Crew Equipment Manager Chris Trigg discusses the suits in the video, noting first and foremost that they’re a part of a “suit-seat system.” Meaning the astronauts’ suits and their seats work in tandem to keep them safe and comfortable.
After boarding a SpaceX spacecraft, astronauts attach their suits to their seats via umbilical cords. Those cords, Trigg notes, provide astronauts with cooling air as well as gases that pressurize the suit.
In addition to providing much-needed gases, the suits also provide protection against fires and hearing damage. Plus, the suits are representative of SpaceX’s—and Tesla’s, for that matter—ethos of making stuff look minimalist and unobtrusive. The suits’ gloves even work with touch screen displays.
The space suits are made entirely in-house at SpaceX, which has its headquarters in Hawthorne, California. A pair of them have already made it into space, however, on the aforementioned trip to the International Space Station. During that mission, Col. Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken were sent to the ISS aboard one of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets.
While in orbit, astronauts @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug performed a habitability assessment of the @SpaceX Crew Dragon. This included:— NASA Commercial Crew (@Commercial_Crew) July 23, 2020
✔️ Opening and closing the hatch
✔️ Operating the waste system
✔️ Moving cargo back into the vehicle
💻: https://t.co/QwPo3Yp0p7 pic.twitter.com/oHzeoOnDhg
Looking forward, SpaceX will doubtlessly continue to iterate its suit design. Whatever iteration will coincide with the launch of the company’s Starship will be the most exciting, however. Because astronauts cruising to Mars will need space-appropriate threads that are comfortable for months on end.
What do you think about this BTS video of how SpaceX makes its space suits? Do you have any suggestions for improvements? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!