NASA officials want you – to cast your vote. Now through 15 April 2014, aerospace geeks everywhere have the opportunity to vote on their favorite futuristic space suit design.
NASA’s next space suit, the Z-2, is the second and newest prototype in the space organization’s Z series of next-generation spacesuits. Its predecessor, the Z-1 suit, was named one of the best inventions of 2012 by Time Magazine. Now, all eyes are on NASA and its engineers to see what creative and innovative designs they’ve come up with for this new prototype suit.
“After the positive response to the Z-1 suit’s visual design we received, we wanted to take the opportunity to provide this new suit with an equally memorable appearance,” explains a spokesperson representing NASA’s space suit engineers. “We, the space suit engineers, have found ourselves with another exciting opportunity: the chance to make a suit with a look unlike any suit ever built before.”
NASA staff used modern hardware and software technologies in the design and development process. In fact, the Z-2 marks NASA’s first use of 3D scanning and 3D printing for spacesuit development, according to officials, who anticipate logging a number of other milestones with the Z-2 space suit. Among them are:
- The first surface-specific planetary mobility suit to be tested in full vacuum
- The most advanced use of impact resistant composite structures on a suit upper and lower torso system
- The first integration of the suit-port concept with a hard upper-torso suit structure, and
- The most conformal and re-sizeable hard upper-torso suit built to date.