The latest International Space Station spacesuit underwent microgravity testing as part of the Crew Capability Assessment test. The objective was to confirm the next-generation spacesuit’s performance in a zero-gravity setting.
Collins Aerospace thoroughly examined the spacesuit for spacewalks on the International Space Station through 40 parabolic flights with Zero-G, concluding this month.
Parabolic flights create brief periods of simulated weightlessness, lasting about 30 seconds each, as the aircraft maneuvers in a high-angle trajectory. This helps assess the spacesuit’s fit, functionality, and compatibility with International Space Station tools and interfaces.
Key focus areas included evaluating the suit’s pressure garment system, its compatibility with International Space Station tools, and comparing the new Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) with the existing design, as stated by RTX.
The overarching goal is to develop a versatile spacesuit that accommodates various crewmember sizes and tasks in the unique space environment.
Peggy Guirgis, general manager of space systems for Collins, said:
“Throughout a series of entry and exit tasks, crew mobility assessments and suit donning, we observed that the suit performed as designed, affording increased range of motion and ease of movement.”
Dave McClure, vice president and general manager of ISR & Space Solutions with Collins Aerospace, explained:
“Our next-generation spacesuit was built by astronauts for astronauts, continuing Collins’ long-standing legacy as a trusted partner of NASA’s human space exploration.
Collins’ advanced spacesuit technology will be used on the International Space Station and we’re prepared to continue keeping astronauts safe, connected, and ready – no matter the mission.”