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Jan 18 2016

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More spacesuit issues

NASA Investigating Another Water Intrusion into Spacesuit During EVA. A little bit behind the curve here, since it happened during the spacewalk on Friday, but whattayagonnado?

Cassidy said the size of the bubble (a half-inch wide and 2-3 inches long) and the fact that the HAP was “squishy” were troubling, but “for me the big hook” was the temperature of the water: “as soon as you can tell it is cold water …. that’s coming from a source in your backpack and that’s a significant concern for us.”

The two astronauts directly made their way back to the airlock. NASA astronaut Scott Kelly, who was inside the ISS during the EVA, helped Kopra get out of his spacesuit and tried to capture any loose water bubbles and put the HAP into a bag for later analysis to help engineers determine the leak rate. Cassidy said there should be no water in the HAP at all unless an astronaut is perspiring profusely.

This recurring issue has obviously got to stop. This couldn’t happen at a worse time, as there are many spacewalks ahead as crew reconfigure the ISS for commercial crew capsules, as well as Bigelow’s BEAM. My recommendation would be for NASA to start from scratch with a complete re-compete for spacesuit manufacturing now. It may not help for the near term, but the sooner we get a better, more reliant suit up there is of paramount importance.

Maybe have an Xprize or Challenge prize offering…just sayin’…

Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2016/01/18/more-spacesuit-issues/

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