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Entries in space suits (10)

Sunday
Sep202009

First Americans on Mars (1964)

The 1964 book Rockets to Explore the Unknown contains some amazing illustrations by George Bakacs of what people thought spacesuits, rockets and even TVs of the future would look like. The image above depicts the first Americans on Mars.

Previously on Paleo-Future:

 

Sunday
Jun282009

A Suit For The First Man on the Moon (1961)

The August 6, 1961 Post-Standard Sunday magazine (Syracuse, NY) ran a short piece about an Experimental Engineering class at UCLA that was experimenting/playing with a "moon man's suit." Designed by Allyn B. Hazard, the suit also appeared on the cover of Life magazine's April 27, 1962 issue. The entire two-page spread from the Post-Standard can be viewed below.

"You're going to land on the moon. You need a suit that will protect you against all the dangers you'll run into. You can start by figuring out what they are."

That's the assignment Professor John Lyman handed his class in Experimental Engineering at U.C.LA. Along with it he gave them a rough model of a moon man's suit designed by California engineer Allyn B. Hazard. The class studied it, wore it, and tried to make it into a practical safeguard for our first moon man. They pin-pointed six major problems the suit must solve:

  1. Breathing: No air on the moon, so the suit must pack oxygen for at least 10 days.
  2. Hot-cold: The moon switches from a boiling 215 degrees F. in the daytime to 250 below at night. Suit must be power-heated and cooled, heavily insulated.
  3. Radiation: A phenomenon called "solar flair" intermittently showers the moon with very intense radiation. Suit must completely shield wearer.
  4. Vacuum effect: Suit must prevent fatal loss of moisture due to moon's near-vacuum atmosphere.
  5. Mobility: Moon's surface is thought to be covered with dust that may be 20 feet thick in places. Also, the atmospheric pressure inside the suit and absence of pressure outside will cause moon man's arms to fly up like Jimmy Durante's and stick there.
  6. Chow: Moon man must carry rations inside suit.

You can see why the suit doesn't exactly have Ivy League cut. Our scientists have dubbed President Kennedy's proposed $40 billion man-to-the-moon project "Apollo." Apollo should sue!

--Joseph Gies

Previously on Paleo-Future:

 

Sunday
Dec072008

Exploring Space (1958)


While The Complete Book of Space Travel was aimed at teen and pre-teen boys, the 1958 book Exploring Space was looking for a younger audience (still of boys, mind you, since we all know that lady-parts get confused with all that science and math).

Below are sample pages from the book, including one that some little tyke got after with a brown crayon.

While some scientists are trying to find out how to land rockets safely, others are learning what kinds of suits space travelers will need. They pump air out of a room, so it is like space. Men who are inside wear space suits to test them. The men breathe through a hose connected to an oxygen tank.

Next a man may test a space suit in a three-stage rocket. Perhaps he will pilot stage three after it breaks away and speeds into space. He will go too fast to feel the pull of gravity. His body will lose all its weight. He will float around the cabin, if he isn't strapped in place. Will the first space traveler like the ride? When he lands, he will tell us.

Other men will follow the first space traveler into space. They will test bigger and bigger rockets. And so scientists will learn how to build great big rocket ships. These ships will fly around the world in an hour.

In time, scientists will know how to build rocket ships that can carry people to the moon. After the moon, what next? Perhaps people will visit other worlds in the sky.

Perhaps when you are grown-up, rockets will be as common as airplanes are now. Then you and all your friends will be space travelers. Rockets away!

 

Previously on Paleo-Future:
Closer Than We Think! Space Coveralls (1960)
The Complete Book of Space Travel (1956)
Challenge of Outer Space (circa 1950s)
Man and the Moon (1955)
Space Suit (1956)
Rocket Ship (1956)

Tuesday
Feb192008

Rocket Ship (1956)

This cross section of a rocket ship appeared in the 1956 book The Complete Book of Space Travel. The space suit we looked at back in December can be seen hanging up at the rear of the ship.

See also:
The Complete Book of Space Travel (1956)
Wernher von Braun's Space Shuttle (1950s)
Space Suit (1956)
Challenge of Outer Space (circa 1950s)
Closer Than We Think! Space Coveralls (1960)

Friday
Dec212007

Space Suit (1956)


This image of the space suit of the future appeared in the 1956 book The Complete Book of Space Travel. For anyone that has ever been to the Minnesota History Center you may also recognize it as part of the space exhibit there.

See also:
The Complete Book of Space Travel (1956)
Closer Than We Think! Space Coveralls (1960)
Wernher von Braun's Space Shuttle (1950s)
Mars and Beyond (1957)
Man and the Moon (1955)

Sunday
Nov182007

Wernher von Braun's Space Shuttle (1950s)

These illustrations by Fred Freeman show Wernher von Braun's concept for a space shuttle in the 1950s. The illustrations can be found in the book Visions of Spaceflight: Images from the Ordway Collection.

To provide safety in case of a malfunction of the reusable upper stage - von Braun's 1950s shuttle concept - crew and passengers press buttons on their chair arms. Contour seats straighten automatically and enclosures snap shut forming sealed escape capsules. To abandon ship, the crew and passengers push another button and the capsules, guided by rails, are ejected by explosive powder charges. The arrangement is seen in cross-section.


After ejection, the capsules' descent is controlled by four-foot steel mesh parachutes. At about 150 above the ground or water, a proximity fuse sets off a small rocket that further slows the rate of fall.


See also:
Challenge of Outer Space (circa 1950s)
The Complete Book of Space Travel (1956)
General Dynamics Astronautics Time Capsule (1963)
Mars and Beyond (1957)
Man and the Moon (1955)
Closer Than We Think! Space Coveralls (1960)

 

Monday
Jul022007

Man and the Moon filmstrip (1970s)


The filmstrip Man and the Moon depicts moon colonization as something just around the corner. A video clip of the filmstrip is below and can be found in its entirety at Droppin' Science.


(On a sidenote, the Droppin' Science website says that Man and the Moon was produced before the first moon landing, which isn't true. The narrator mentions the first moon landing midway through the filmstrip.)

See also:
Olympic Games on the Moon in 2020 (1979)
Hubert H. Humphrey's Future (1967)
Future Cities: Homes and Living into the 21st Century (1979)
Challenge of Outer Space (circa 1950s)
Mars and Beyond (1957)
Animal Life on Mars (1957)
Plant Life on Mars (1957)
Man and the Moon (1955)