Advanced Technology Application in the Production of Spacesuit Gloves 901322
ILC Dover successfully designed and developed an advanced high pressure (8.3 psia) Spacesuit Glove for use on the space station. As an aide to fabrication of this glove, a feasibility study has been performed to use laser or photo optical, non contact scanning, CAD and CAM technologies.
The current process for fabrication of spacesuit gloves starts by taking hand casts of a crewman's hands in one or more positions. The castings are subsequently measured by hand in critical areas, and a manual system of defining the glove bladder and glove restraint patterns follows.
The proposed process will involve collecting dimensional data on hands using laser or photo optical scanning techniques. Key dimensions will be identified on a CAD system. Algorithms pre-programmed in the CAD system along with some CAD modeling will be used to manipulate the scanned data to define the glove bladder and glove restraint. Separate CAD subroutines will subsequently define the glove bladder dip form and glove restraint patterns. The dip form data will then be directed to a Stereolithography machine to produce a dip form. As a result of this study, a method of providing a more accurate fit, in less time, will be defined. A goal of the study is to cut in half the current time required to deliver a pair of customized flight gloves.