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Up close with the fresh new spacesuits astronauts will soon wear in orbit for the first time

Inside the first American spacecraft to take humans to orbit since the Space Shuttle, launching today, are, well, humans. And those humans are wearing brand new spacesuits that are also making a historic debut. Ahead of today’s launch (which you can watch here), NASA and SpaceX gave a fresh look at the new suits, which we may be seeing much more of soon.
The spacesuits were designed by SpaceX in collaboration with NASA and the astronauts going up today, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley. They’re intended to bring modern materials and technology to a comfortable form factor that integrates seamlessly with the Crew Dragon capsule.
These aren’t, it is important to note, a replacement for the familiar EVA suits that have been in use for decades, though those are also being redesigned in-house. The ones Behnken and Hurley will wear are pressure suits, akin to what fighter-jet pilots wear. These custom-fitted garments are meant to provide protection against the dangers of launch, including brief periods of vacuum or high heat, but not outer space.
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