NASA chooses manufacturers of new lunar spacesuits

NASA has chosen Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace to create next-generation spacesuits. They will be used for spacewalks from the ISS and during moon landings as part of the Artemis program.

Concept of next-generation lunar spacesuits. Source: NASA

Initially, NASA planned to independently develop new spacesuits. But then the management of the organization preferred a model similar to the CAST (Crew Space Transportation) program. Within its framework, Boeing and SpaceX have received contracts for the development of new manned spacecraft designed to deliver people into orbit.

This is how the xEVAS (Exploration Extravehicular Activity Services) program was born. Within its framework, the aerospace administration has issued contracts with a firm fixed price to Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace. Their total amount is USD 3.5 billion, they are designed for a period up to 2034. Private companies will be responsible for the design, development, qualification, certification and production of spacesuits, while NASA will set technical requirements and safety standards. Formally, the spacesuits will remain owned by Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace, and NASA will lease them. The first spacesuits should be ready for the Artemis III mission, the implementation of which is scheduled for 2025.

Prototype of the Collins Aerospace lunar spacesuit. Source: Collins Aerospace
Concept of the Collins Aerospace lunar spacesuit. Source: Collins Aerospace
Concept of the Collins Aerospace lunar spacesuit. Source: Collins Aerospace

Currently, Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace have published only a few general illustrations and have not presented to the public specific technical details of their projects. In its statement, Axiom Space noted that it has numerous customers ready to make a spacewalk. In turn, Collins Aerospace focused on using the experience gained during the development of Apollo-era spacesuits and modern American spacesuits currently used on the ISS. 

Axiom Space and Collins Aerospace are not the only private companies creating spacesuits for extravehicular activity. SpaceX has a similar project. And at the end of this year, it will be tested in “combat” conditions, when the first-ever private spacewalk will take place as part of the Polaris Dawn mission.

According to

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