SpaceX's Sleek New Spacesuits Were Created by the Costume Designer for Marvel's 'Avengers'

Wednesday, 23 August 2017 - 10:06AM
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Space
SpaceX
Wednesday, 23 August 2017 - 10:06AM
SpaceX's Sleek New Spacesuits Were Created by the Costume Designer for Marvel's 'Avengers'
Image credit: SpaceX
Elon Musk has shared a first official look at the new spacesuits that customers aboard his commercial space tourism service, SpaceX, will get to wear while travelling among the stars. If these suits look suspiciously like they might be borrowed from the set of a major sci-fi movie's costume department, there's a good reason for that: they're deliberately designed to look as cool as possible.

A post shared by Elon Musk (@elonmusk) on


As Musk notes in his Instagram post revealing the spacesuit, this design is intended to "balance esthetics and function". Getting a nice, lightweight, form-fitting suit with a big, wide visor is an important part of the SpaceX experience, so it's no wonder Musk's team didn't settle for a bulkier, more traditional design. This suit is the result of SpaceX working with legendary science fiction costume designer Jose Fernandez, who was responsible in part for costumes seen in movies like After Earth and Jupiter Ascending, as well as superhero films like Avengers, Captain America: Civil War, and Wonder Woman.

Space tourism is all about building up the romanticism of leaving Earth behind—where NASA's scientific trips into orbit are the interstellar equivalent of flying economy, SpaceX is a luxury first-class experience, with ample space to twirl around in zero gravity, phenomenal views, and of course, a really cool spacesuit. This being the case, it's easy to see why the build of this suit needs to be different from a more practical design. The sleek aesthetic helps SpaceX customers feel like they're adventurers, rather than scientists. What's most important, though, is that big clear visor, which not only looks cool, but also makes sure that the wearer gets the best possible view while on their adventure.

It's fun to think how science fiction has managed to affect genuine space travel. Ultimately, this seems inevitable—the moment spacesuits in movies started looking cool and sleek, and audiences started equating this kind of design with fun, exciting space adventures, we were always going to end up in a situation where someone made a working spacesuit to match public perceptions. These suits aren't going to be used for space walks—tourists will still need something more protective for that. Instead, these will be worn within SpaceX's similarly sci-fi-esque Dragon capsule, which will take passengers on their luxury zero-gravity cruises.

Either way, it's hard not to get excited by these sci-fi-inspired designs. If someone could get Chris Pratt to model one, they could take off as a fashion item for life on Terra Firma as well!
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