Astronaut refuses to spacewalk because of ‘uncomfortable spacesuit’

Have you ever missed your work because your clothes are simply uncomfortable? If you’re a NASA astronaut, you’ll be forgiven for such a “trick”. For example, on June 14, NASA canceled a planned spacewalk because one astronaut suddenly felt “discomfort in the spacesuit.” 

Astronaut in a spacesuit. Photo: NASA

According to the agency, astronauts Tracy Dyson and Matthew Dominick, who were scheduled to perform the spacewalk, were fully clothed in spacesuits. But an hour before the mission was to begin, it was canceled. It was supposed to be the 90th spacewalk for NASA on the ISS.

NASA did not release details, but Reuters reported that shortly before the cancellation, another astronaut, Mike Barratt, requested permission to use a private communication line to discuss a medical problem with dispatchers. It is not known if the cancellation is related to a medical problem and which of the astronauts experienced discomfort.

It seems that the situation was not critical. In its message NASA noted that all crew members were healthy and the spacesuits worked properly. The next spacewalk is scheduled for June 24.

This is not the first time that spacewalks have been canceled due to problems with spacesuits. In 2019, NASA’s all-female crew’s first spacewalk was delayed because the spacesuit didn’t fit properly. Even more serious was the case in 2022, when the agency suspended nearly all spacewalks due to the discovery of water in an astronaut’s helmet.

The latest incident isn’t as dramatic as the previous ones, but it may once again raise the question of when NASA will finally update its astronauts’ spacesuits.

We previously reported on how astronauts attempted to wear spacesuits in the Artemis III mission’s cramped HLS landing module.