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Technical Paper

Development of a Space Suit Soft Upper Torso Mobility/Sizing Actuation System with Focus on Prototype Development and Manned Testing

2007-07-09
2007-01-3169
ILC Dover Inc. was awarded a three-year NRA grant for the development of innovative spacesuit pressure garment technology that will enable safer, more reliable, and effective human exploration of the space frontier. The research focused on the development of a high performance mobility/sizing actuation system for a spacesuit soft upper torso (SUT) pressure garment. This technology has application in two areas (1) repositioning the scye bearings to improve specific joint motion i.e. hammering (Figure 1), hand over hand translation (Figure 2), etc., and (2) as a suit sizing mechanism to allow easier suit entry and more accurate suit fit with fewer torso sizes than the existing EMU. This research was divided into three phases. In phases 1 and 2 SUT actuation technologies were developed and evaluated.
Technical Paper

Micrometeoroid and Orbital Debris Enhancements of Shuttle Extravehicular Mobility Unit Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment

2006-07-17
2006-01-2285
As NASA is preparing to extend man's reach into space, it is expected that astronauts will be required to spend more and more time exposed to the hazards of performing Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA). One of these hazards includes the risk of the space suit bladder being penetrated by hypervelocity micrometeoroid and orbital debris (MMOD) particles. Therefore, it has become increasingly important to investigate new ways to improve the protectiveness of the current Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) against MMOD penetration. ILC Dover conducted a NASA funded study into identifying methods of improving the current EMU protection. The first part of this evaluation focused on identifying how to increase the EMU shielding, selecting materials to accomplish this, and testing these materials to determine the best lay-up combinations to integrate into the current thermal micrometeoroid garment (TMG) design.
Technical Paper

Phase VI Glove TMG Evolution

2004-07-19
2004-01-2344
As Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA) is becoming more challenging and a renewed interest into planetary exploration is being pursued, having a spacesuit glove that is able to perform more complex and dexterous tasks with less hand fatigue is critical. In an effort to build upon an already proven foundation a new investigation has been made into reducing the torque of the Phase VI Glove Thermal Micrometeoroid Garment (TMG) along with improving dexterity and tactility. This paper addresses the makeup of the Phase VI Glove TMG and details the investigation into improving the current design. An investigation into alternative heating methods was also pursued.
Technical Paper

I-Suit Advanced Spacesuit Design Improvements and Performance Testing

2003-07-07
2003-01-2443
The I-Suit has been tested in varying environments at Johnson Space Center (JSC). This includes laboratory mobility testing, KC-135 partial gravity flights, and remote field testing in the Mojave Desert. The experience gained from this testing has provided insight for design improvements. These improvements have been an evolutionary process since 1998 to the present. The design improvements affect existing suit components and introduce new components for systems processing and human/robotic interface. Examples of these design improvements include improved mobility joints, a new helmet with integrated communications and displays capability, and integration of textile switches for control of suit functions and tele-robotic operations. This paper addresses an overview of I-Suit design improvements and results of manned and unmanned performance tests.
Technical Paper

Phase VI Advanced EVA Glove Development and Certification for the International Space Station

2001-07-09
2001-01-2163
Since the early 1980’s, the Shuttle Extra Vehicular Activity (EVA) glove design has evolved to meet the challenge of space based tasks. These tasks have typically been satellite retrieval and repair or EVA based flight experiments. With the start of the International Space Station (ISS) assembly, the number of EVA based missions is increasing far beyond what has been required in the past; this has commonly been referred to as the “Wall of EVA’s”. To meet this challenge, it was determined that the evolution of the current glove design would not meet future mission objectives. Instead, a revolution in glove design was needed to create a high performance tool that would effectively increase crewmember mission efficiency. The results of this effort have led to the design, certification and implementation of the Phase VI EVA glove into the Shuttle flight program.
Technical Paper

Space Shuttle Small EMU Development

2000-07-10
2000-01-2256
With the initial construction of the International Space Station (ISS) underway, NASA has increased the number of astronauts to meet the demands of such a large construction effort. Both American astronauts and international partners will use NASA's space suit, the Space Shuttle Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) to construct ISS. An increasing number of these new astronauts are females who do not adequately fit in the existing sizes of the EMU. In order to accommodate these astronauts, a smaller version of the EMU is under development. This development will examine all aspects of the EMU and design and fabricate new components to provide the astronauts with a space suit which provides adequate fit and is highly mobile.
Technical Paper

Shuttle Space Suit Glove Thermal Protection and Performance Improvement Evolution

1994-06-01
941329
The success of astronauts performing Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA) is highly dependent on the performance capabilities of their spacesuit gloves. Thermal protection of crewmember's hands has always been a critical concern but has recently become more important because of the increasing role of the crewmember in the manipulation of objects in the environment of space. The utilization of EVA for challenging missions, such as the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) repair and Space Station assembly missions, has prompted the need for improved glove thermal protection. The increased manipulation of hot and cold objects is necessary to complete these complex missions. Thermal protection of the spacesuit glove is accomplished by the Thermal and Micrometeoroid Garment (TMG). The TMG is a multilayered cover that fits over the restraint layer of the spacesuit glove. The TMG is engineered to provide thermal protection for crewmember's hands as well as for the glove bladder and restraint.
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