SpaceX presents the EVA astronaut suit with which the first commercial spacewalk will be carried out

It's not too long before the first commercial spacewalk in history. The mission Polaris Dawnoperated by SpaceX and financed by the billionaire Jared Isaacman, will be a space flight aboard the Crew Dragon with a duration of 5 days and in which private citizens will participate. It is scheduled for this year, still without a specific date, but it ventures closer after SpaceX has presented extravehicular space suits, EVAwhich will be used in Polaris Dawn and other missions in the future.

With EVA, Isaacman, and the rest of the Crew Dragon crew, they will be able venture out of the space capsuletest the advanced materials with which they have been manufactured, the aerodynamic design of the joints and the front screen of the helmet in what will be the first time in which a space tourist leaves the ship and can take a walk.

Polaris Dawn is the first of three missions planned in the Polaris program. Isaacman will be accompanied Scott Poteetretired American pilot, Sarah Gillislead space operations engineer at SpaceX, and Anna Menon, mission director at SpaceX. It is the first flight with a crew made up of private citizens and among its objectives it includes flying higher than any previous mission with the Crew Dragon, which involves exceeding the 400 kilometers at which the International Space Station orbits, trying to reach the highest Earth orbit ever flowntesting the Starlink laser communication network, conducting scientific experiments and the first spacewalk in which four astronauts will be exposed to the vacuum of space at the same time.

The EVA suit is less bulky than the standard astronaut suits that we are used to seeing, also that the suits that NASA presented last year and that it plans to use in future missions Artemis. This is due, in part, to the fact that those from the US space agency integrate the life support necessary for the astronaut while EVA suits remain physically connected to Crew Dragon through an “umbilical tube” to provide it. The result is that they are more stylized and very similar to the intravehicular suits that Crew Dragon astronauts have used for several years.

Recreation of a special ride from the Crew Dragon.SpaceX.

Count on 3D printed polycarbonate helmet and visors coated with copper and indium tin oxide, which prevent glare and fogging. A transparent display, HUD, inside the helmet provides real-time data on pressure, temperature and humidity. Most of the suit's control is automatic, but there are a dial to control oxygen levelswhich is channeled through the tube connected to the Crew Dragon.

EVA space suits.
EVA space suits.SpaceX.

According to SpaceX on its website, the EVA suits have been 'developed with mobility in mind, SpaceX teams incorporated new materials, manufacturing processes and Innovative joint designs to provide greater flexibility for astronauts in pressurized settings while maintaining comfort in non-atmospheric pressure settings.'

The suits use a fire resistant material and a spiral zipper design for added strength. They can survive a wide range of temperatures and pressures and can also be expanded and reduced to fit various body sizes.

SpaceX claims the new suit uses semi-rigid rotary joints which are much more compact than those of the EMU, NASA's Extravehicular Mobility Unit, and can be used in pressurized and non-pressurized states. This aspect is relevant because the four members of the Polaris Dawn crew They will be carried both on and off the ship during the five-day mission.