Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a retractable spacesuit

MIT scientists have designed a second skin type space suit, using smart materials that can automatically shrink wrap the skin, forming a secure pressurized environment. This pressure can not only support the tight space suit astronaut’s body, while also giving them a greater degree of freedom in the process of planetary exploration.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a retractable spacesuit 1 

MIT scientists have designed a second skin type space suit, using smart materials that can automatically shrink wrap the skin, forming a secure pressurized environment. This pressure can not only support the tight space suit astronaut’s body, while also giving them a greater degree of freedom in the process of planetary exploration.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a retractable spacesuit 2

An active tourniquet will be designed to stimulate the shape memory alloy structure with 3D printing (cream plastic) and passive fabrics (white bars) together.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a retractable spacesuit 3

Two shape memory alloy coils, one unfolded state, one state after shrinkage.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a retractable spacesuit 4

The current is very bulky space suits, limiting the ability to move the astronauts.

Beijing on the 28th, according to foreign media reports, the initial very bulky spacesuit, astronaut like set in a balloon inside. As technology advances, the current space suit has been completely transformed. Future, astronauts could put U.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed the ability to automatically shrink the space suits, they become second skin to protect them from space radiation invasion. This pressure can not only support the tight space suit astronaut’s body, while also giving them a greater degree of freedom in the process of planetary exploration.

Traditional relatively bulky pressurized spacesuits, astronauts need to “climb” into wearing. Future spacesuit will use light elastic fabric, lining the tiny muscular coils. The new space suit can be connected to the ship’s electrical equipment, causing the coils shrink and become like an astronaut’s body like shrink wrap film. Compared with the traditional space suit, this tight pressurized spacesuit not be able to support the astronaut’s body, while also giving them a greater degree of freedom in the process of planetary exploration.

To take off spacesuit, astronaut need only impose a small force, so spacesuit back more fluffy state. In the development of this “second skin” type spacesuit, the MIT scientists are constantly making progress, from achieving the goal of getting closer. Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Engineering Systems at MIT Dawa – Newman pointed out that her colleagues have developed active contraction clothes, a small coil spring-like, contraction when exposed to heat. This shape memory alloy coil. Shape memory alloys can “remember” their shape, bent or deformed when heated able to recover shape. The team will be combined with a similar coil tourniquet cuffs together, utilizing current generates heat. Under certain temperature conditions, the remembered collapsed into a coil shape, such as a coil spring shape, contraction of the cuff during the deformation process.

During the test, the research team found that the pressure generated by the coil and in space, astronauts needed to fully support the same pressure. Newman said: “The traditional spacesuit is basically a balloon, to provide third atm, let them survive in a vacuum environment, we hope to provide the same pressure, but in a way is a mechanical counter-pressure is applied directly to the skin. pressure, there is no need to generate pressure and we will passive elastic and active material together. This design has a huge advantage, and that is greater mobility while light weight, easy astronauts planetary exploration. “Over the past 10 years time Newman has been committed to the design and soft fit for the future spacesuit.

Coil design lab by postdoctoral researcher Newman Bradley – the Hall Hu amnesty. Researchers elastic cuffs add a coil array, each coil is attached to a line connected with the cuffs. After this, they add to the other end of the coil wire, the voltage is applied to generate heat. At a temperature of 60 ° C to 160 ° C, the contraction of the coil, the pull wire is connected, and then tighten the cuff. Hall Huch said: “They are basically self-closing buckle once put on space suits, the current will pass through all these small parts, with the contraction of the coil is wrapped tightly..”

Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an active material design can be used for other purposes, such as apparel or uniform. Hall Huch said: “You can use it as a tourniquet, treat bleeding on the battlefield if the person installing the sensor, the tourniquet will start immediately after the detection of injuries, even without the user thinking..” Newman pointed out: “to improve the human ability to design a comprehensive style of clothing is a exciting things we design to ensure the survival of astronauts in space, safety and improve mobility, but the design of the application and not only. Space is limited. “

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