PDA

View Full Version : MIT Designs Sleek, Skintight Spacesuit



ckb2001
07-18-2007, 01:57 AM
I'd want to go into space even with one of those bulky ones, but this new one sure looks better (and seems to feel - based on the picture in the article):
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070716190814.htm

"Newman is working on a sleek, advanced suit designed to allow superior mobility when humans eventually reach Mars or return to the moon. Her spandex and nylon BioSuit is not your grandfather's spacesuit--think more Spiderman, less John Glenn.

Newman's prototype suit is a revolutionary departure from the traditional model. Instead of using gas pressurization, which exerts a force on the astronaut's body to protect it from the vacuum of space, the suit relies on mechanical counter-pressure, which involves wrapping tight layers of material around the body. The trick is to make a suit that is skintight but stretches with the body, allowing freedom of movement.

Newman anticipates that the BioSuit could be ready by the time humans are ready to launch an expedition to Mars, possibly in about 10 years."
-----------------

Miamian
07-18-2007, 08:02 AM
A bit like the Amazonian space suit that Wonder Woman wears in the comics, skin-tight plastics.

LouPhinFan
07-18-2007, 10:05 AM
It sounds like they're more worried about the pressure than anything else. How would a suit like that protect the human body against the cold tempuratures on the Moon or Mars?

I know one thing, you'd better be in top shape to wear that suit, I bet it shows off every fat part of your body! :lol:

ckb2001
07-18-2007, 01:45 PM
It sounds like they're more worried about the pressure than anything else. How would a suit like that protect the human body against the cold tempuratures on the Moon or Mars?

I know one thing, you'd better be in top shape to wear that suit, I bet it shows off every fat part of your body! :lol:

Temperature isn't really a big problem. You just use water that circulates through the suit to regulate it. By the way, it's not just cold temperatures, it's also very high temperatures they have to worry about. But, that's mostly a solved problem so I don't think this is a serious concern with the new suit.

Scrap
07-18-2007, 05:33 PM
I'm picturing a future fat astronaut in one of those. Bad memories of spandex.

LouPhinFan
07-18-2007, 05:51 PM
Temperature isn't really a big problem. You just use water that circulates through the suit to regulate it. By the way, it's not just cold temperatures, it's also very high temperatures they have to worry about. But, that's mostly a solved problem so I don't think this is a serious concern with the new suit.

I was just wondering. The article only talks about pressure and never mentions anything tempurature control. They mention that if the suit gets punctured, there's a special patch you can put over the hole. If the suit is that tight, what type of "pump" do they use to circulate the water? I would think it would have to be a pretty powerful one...

ckb2001
07-18-2007, 06:45 PM
I was just wondering. The article only talks about pressure and never mentions anything tempurature control. They mention that if the suit gets punctured, there's a special patch you can put over the hole. If the suit is that tight, what type of "pump" do they use to circulate the water? I would think it would have to be a pretty powerful one...

Well, first of all, let's be clear about the problem. While it's true that space is an extremely cold environment (and can be extremely hot when facing the sun), space is also a vacuum (almost), meaning it's nearly impossible to lose heat to it through conduction.

So, the real challenge is to keep whatever temperature you are already in stable, since loss of that heat to space occurs so slowly you don't really have to worry about that much. It's kind of counter-intuitive, but the bigger problem is heating up within your spacesuit instead of getting cold.

So, you essentially use something like a diving suit in traditional space suits too (underneath the bulky stuff). Just as in this biosuit, water is circulated, drawing heat away (since heat will build up underneath the suit). So, whatever pumps are already used are probably the same that would be used in this more flexible one.

LouPhinFan
07-18-2007, 10:58 PM
Well, first of all, let's be clear about the problem. While it's true that space is an extremely cold environment (and can be extremely hot when facing the sun), space is also a vacuum (almost), meaning it's nearly impossible to lose heat to it through conduction.

So, the real challenge is to keep whatever temperature you are already in stable, since loss of that heat to space occurs so slowly you don't really have to worry about that much. It's kind of counter-intuitive, but the bigger problem is heating up within your spacesuit instead of getting cold.

So, you essentially use something like a diving suit in traditional space suits too (underneath the bulky stuff). Just as in this biosuit, water is circulated, drawing heat away (since heat will build up underneath the suit). So, whatever pumps are already used are probably the same that would be used in this more flexible one.

Ah, I see. I didn't realize it worked that way. Thanks man...:)

BigDogsHunt
07-19-2007, 11:48 AM
I vote for "Model's in Space" as the first participants!