“We are excited to collaborate with Prada on the Axiom Extravehicular Mobility Unit (AxEMU) space suit”, said Michael Suffredini (ref.), CEO of Axiom. “Prada’s technical expertise in raw materials, production techniques, and innovative design concepts will provide advanced technologies to ensure astronaut comfort”.
Prada & Axiom Collaboration
In 2022, NASA selected Axiom Space to build and manage the space suits that Artemis 3 crew members will wear during the first lunar landing. On the White House’s directive, the mission will include a female crew member and mark the first time humans will land and explore the lunar South Pole.
Prada’s engineers will work with Axiom’s team to identify materials and develop protective features against challenges posed by the lunar environment. “Our decades of experimentation, cutting-edge technology, and design know-how will be applied to the Artemis-era space suit design. It’s a true celebration of human creativity and innovation to advance civilization” said Lorenzo Bertelli, Prada’s marketing director. “We are honored to be part of this historic mission with Axiom Space”.
Axiom unveiled its first AxEMU prototype in March. Black, orange, Marquis garment was later adapted for spaceflight as a space suit on Axiom’s commercial mission to the International Space Station (ISS) in May.
Not the First Time
In announcing the Prada partnership, Axiom Space also provided a first look at the current white outer layer, which, at least in color, will be closer to what astronauts will wear on the Moon. The AxEMU will provide advanced capabilities for space exploration to NASA astronauts and its international partners. Simultaneously, commercially developed human systems will be required by NASA to access, live, and work on the Moon.
Evolving the design of NASA’s Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU) space suits, the ones Axiom/Prada provides offer greater flexibility, enhanced protection against the harsh environment, and specialized tools for exploration and scientific opportunities. With Prada as a partner, Axiom believes its AxEMU space suits will enable broader lunar surface exploration than ever before.
Axiom Space is the latest company to collaborate with a fashion designer to assist in space suit development. SpaceX partnered with Marvel and DC superhero costume designer Jose Fernandez for the look and construction of its Dragon pressure suits. Virgin Galactic collaborated with Under Armour to create the clothing line worn by SpaceShipTwo passengers during flight. Finally, Boeing worked with the sportswear company Reebok to develop the boots that astronauts will wear on the CST-100 Starliner spacecraft headed for the space station.