A Methodology for Choosing Candidate Materials for the Fabrication of Planetary Space Suit Structures 901429
A study of space suit structures and materials is underway at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA. The study was initiated by the need for a generation of lightweight space suits to be used in future planetary Exploration Missions. This paper provides a brief description of the Lunar and Mars environments and reviews what has been done in the past in the design and development of fabric, metal, and composite suit components in order to establish criteria for comparison of promising candidate materials and space suit structures. Environmental factors and mission scenarios will present challenging material and structural requirements; thus, a program is planned to outline the methodology used to identify materials and processes for producing candidate space suit structures which meet those requirements.