Italian luxury brand Prada and Axiom Space are teaming up to create next-generation spacesuits for NASA's astronauts—and they're going to be out of this world.
In a press release on Wednesday, Axiom Space shared that Prada's engineers will be working with its systems teams to design and create uniquely crafted spacesuits built to withstand the challenges of space, providing increased flexibility, stronger protection, and special tools for exploration.
"Prada's technical expertise with raw materials, manufacturing techniques, and innovative design concepts will bring advanced technologies instrumental in ensuring not only the comfort of astronauts on the lunar surface, but also the much-needed human factors considerations absent from legacy spacesuits," Axiom Space CEO Michael Suffredini shared.
The new Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit (AxEMU) spacesuits will be used for NASA's upcoming Artemis 3 mission in 2025. It will also be the first mission to place a woman on the moon.
Astronauts Weigh In on the Collab
Given Prada's reputation as a formidable luxury brand, one would not think its next project would involve an outer space mission.
Still, professor and former NASA astronaut Jeffrey Hoffman believes Prada's expertise in design and garments gives it leverage to work on such a project.
"Prada has considerable experience with various types of composite fabrics and may actually be able to make some real technical contributions to the outer layers of the new space suit," he shared.
However, Hoffman, who has previously gone on five successful space flights, told people not to expect "paisley spacesuits," or anything of Prada's usual line of work.
"A spacesuit is really like a miniature spacecraft. It has to provide pressure, oxygen, and keep you at a reasonable temperature," the veteran astronaut concluded.
Edited by Nikola Djuric