Everyone who was alive to remember watching their TV sets in 1969 as Neil and Buzz touched down on the Moon for the very first time has their own version of the seminal achievement shared across the globe — and mankind. For those born after 1972, we’ve had to resort to documentary footage and, now, YouTube in order to catch a glimpse of any human being walking on the surface of our closest neighbor in space.
If Apollo 11 was the inaugural feat, Apollo 17 three years later marked the final time a human stepped foot on the Moon. Since then, collective society (especially those who’d love to see it happen live on TV) has been clamoring for a return. A few years back, NASA debuted its Artemis program with the hopes of sending humans back to the Moon for the first time in over 50 years. And now, it’s unveiled the spacesuit that will join the four-person crew on the mission. Contracted by NASA for over $228 million, Axiom Space has developed the AxEMU (Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit) prototype, a cutting-edge suit that features new tech, safety features, and enhanced comfort and mobility for moonwalking.
The Artemis III mission will also see the first-ever woman to step foot on the Moon as well as the first time we’ve reached the lunar South Pole, where lies frozen water inside of craters. Development still continues on the AxEMU to feature innovative life support systems, pressure garments, and avionics, and it requires further testing in “space-like environments.” However, the suit has been built with plenty of astronaut feedback already and is designed to accommodate over 90% of the U.S. population and fit a broad range of crew members.
Artemis I launched last November with an uncrewed vessel, while Artemis II is set for a lunar flyby in 2024. However, in 2025, Artemis III will touch down on the Moon’s surface. Learn more about the AxEMU spacesuit that will accompany them over on NASA’s website.