In support of the Constellation Program, NASA conducted an analysis of crew clothing and laundry options. Disposable clothing is currently used in human space missions. However, the new mission duration, goals, launch penalties and habitat environments may lead to a different conclusion.
Mass and volume for disposable clothing are major penalties in long-duration human missions. Equivalent System Mass (ESM) of crew clothing and hygiene towels was estimated at about 11% of total life support system ESM for a 4-crew, 10-year Lunar Outpost mission. Ways to lessen this penalty include: reduce clothing supply mass through using clothes made of advanced fabrics, reduce daily usage rate by extending wear duration and employing a laundry with reusable clothing.
Lunar habitat atmosphere pressure and therefore oxygen volume percentage will be different from Space Station or Shuttle. Thus flammability of clothing must be revisited. This paper summarizes recent research efforts in advanced clothing, proposed clothing supply rates, results of a trade-off study between disposable clothing and laundry, and suggestions for Constellation Program clothing.