NASA this week unveiled the spacesuit that will be worn by astronauts when they arrive on the Moon in 2025.
A prototype of the suit, developed by Axiom Space for the Artemis III mission, was revealed Wednesday(Opens in a new window) during a Texas event for media and students at the Space Center Houston.
“NASA’s partnership with Axiom is critical to landing astronauts on the Moon and continuing American leadership in space,” Bill Nelson, head of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, said in a statement. Axiom’s next-generation spacesuits, he explained, will “open opportunities for more people to explore and conduct science on the Moon than ever before.”
The Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit (AxEMU) spacesuit is designed to enhance mobility and offer extra protection from hazards on the Moon. The prototype is dark gray in color, but NASA’s Johnson Space Center confirmed in a tweet(Opens in a new window) that the final design is probably going to be “all-white.”
Axiom Space, which last year snagged a $228.5 million contract to deliver a “moonwalking system,” will continue innovating the suit’s life support systems, pressure garments, and avionics ahead of NASA’s scheduled 2025 trip to the lunar South Pole.
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“NASA is leading the way in enabling a growing space economy by leveraging industry capabilities and NASA’s expertise to provide moonwalking services as safely, effectively, and efficiently as possible,” according to Lara Kearney, manager of the agency’s Extravehicular Activity and Human Surface Mobility program.
NASA may be the first (and perhaps most prominent) customer to adopt the new spacesuit, but it likely won’t be the last. Axiom’s contract encourages the firm to pursue other moonwalking clients, helping to bolster the emerging commercial market, while granting NASA access to the latest technology.
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