Conventional NASA spacesuits
can cost several million dollars. The commercial
spaceflight industry, which plans to fly thousands
of passengers on suborbital space rides, needs
to develop lower cost, simpler pressure suits.
are now appearing that are taking on the challenge
of developing simple, low cost pressure suits
that will serve as emergency backup in case of
air leaks during a spaceflight.
Also, even NASA needs help in developing durable
and practical suits for future explorers to wear
while working for long periods on the surface
of the Moon and Mars. Student and space advocacy
groups have been working on such technologies.
Below we show examples of some of the "alternative"
spacesuit development going on in small companies,
student projects, and activist organizations.
An animation released by Virgin
Galactic in the fall
showed passengers in a SpaceShipTwo frolicking
weightlessness while wearing conceptual pressure