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The U.S. space agency announced Wednesday that astronauts landing on the moon later this decade could wear new space suits made by Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace through NASA’s Artemis program.
Clothing for living and working at the International Space Station will be worn by crew members. The Orbit Laboratory is not only a testing ground for space exploration, but also new technology.
The contracts were awarded by NASA as part of its strategy to develop business partnerships.
Both companies were selected to create the next generation of spacesuits. Depending on how both companies offer clothing and their aerospace capabilities, one company can beat the other. This flexibility is structured as work rewards as both companies progress through product development.
“Through these awards, NASA and our allies will create advanced, reliable spacecraft that will allow humans to explore the universe like never before,” Vanessa Vichy, director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, said in a statement.
“By collaborating with industry, we are actively developing the technology needed to keep Americans on the path to successful discovery at the International Space Station, with the aim of exploring the lunar surface.”
The Artemis Project It aims to land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon’s South Pole by 2025, probably preparing to send humans to Mars.
NASA experts have developed the technical and safety standards required for space wear. Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace will design, manufacture and manufacture costumes and equipment for astronauts and Artemis astronauts.
“The current space suite has been the backbone of the agency for 40 years and has helped maintain, operate and build the International Space Station,” said Tina Condella, Operations Coordinator for NASA’s International Space Station Project.
“We will make a systematic transition from our current space suit to the new space suit. We look forward to working with vendors as partners, bringing the International Space Station and their space suit to the modern age, and then assisting the agency on its way to the moon.
These dresses should be ready by mid-2020. New clothes and their capabilities will help explore the moon more than ever before, said Lindsay Itzison, director of NASA’s ExtraVahicular Function and Human Surface Movement program.
“We can test these capabilities, and they will be tested before our astronauts can be used in orbit or on the moon,” Wise said.
In the first steps both companies provide clothing for demonstrating outside the space station and for the Artemis III landing on the lunar surface.
“Our business partnerships will help achieve human research goals,” said Mark Kerasek, co-director of NASA’s Artemis Campaign Development Division.
“We look forward to using these services to stay in NASA’s low Earth orbit and for our next achievement of sending American astronauts back to the lunar surface.”
These agreements support everything needed for space travel until 2034. The company shares aircraft and ground test data from previous space missions, as well as NASA’s Exploration of Extravecular Mobility, a unit development program, with Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace.
Previously, the development plan designed the cases.
NASA Inspector General Paul K. The Martin 2021 report stated that the agency’s goal of sending U.S. astronauts back to the moon by 2024 could not be achieved due to significant delays in space suit development.
Although NASA will spend more than $ 1 billion on next-generation space suits, Martin concludes that “these suits will not be ready to fly anytime soon until April 2025” and will last “many, many years.”
“I think all of these data help reduce risk and accelerate this transition in the entrepreneurial community,” said Laura Gearney, director of NASA’s ExtraVahicular Operations and Human Surface Movement program.
According to officials, the maximum possible contract value for all work orders placed is $ 3.5 billion.
“We help not only achieve NASA’s goals, but also support and promote the growing aerospace economy, so that in the future NASA’s additional vehicle operations will be limited to the range of customers they can purchase, not just services.” Itsison said.
Both companies have invested their own money in suit development and own space clothing.
“The public-private partnership is really an advantage for NASA and will allow them to gain the ability to use it, and then they will have it, so they can offer it to non-NASA clients,” Wise said.
“So it’s a joint venture, in which we each get something.”
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