U.S. Spacesuit Knowledge Capture – Expanding Our Future



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2023 International Conference on Environmental Systems


NASA is going to the Moon. And it will don a new spacesuit when it reaches its destination. NASA is partnering with industry to build the spacesuit and supporting systems (i.e., surface mobility tools) that astronauts will use on the Moon, starting with Artemis III. The Johnson Space Center’s (JSC) Extravehicular Activity and Human Surface Mobility Program (EHP) is managing this effort, and the U.S. Spacesuit Knowledge Capture (SKC) Program is expanding its scope to help. For 15 years, the SKC Program has collected, archived, and disseminated decades of spacesuit-related knowledge, as appropriate, to help NASA scientists, technicians, and engineers support space exploration. The SKC Program captures its knowledge by hosting and recording subject-matter expert (SME) lectures, interviews, and workshops. It also collects retired SMEs’ reports, drawings, and schematics containing legacy spacesuit knowledge. To build a technically capable spacesuit essential for future lunar exploration, spacesuit professionals borrowed much of their knowledge from legacy Extravehicular Activity (EVA) spacesuits. Most of the SKC Program’s captured knowledge has focused on legacy and current spacesuits. To support the EHP, the SKC Program is expanding its knowledge capture focus beyond the spacesuit and will seek to collect knowledge from other pertinent topics (e.g., lunar terrain vehicle and EVA tools). In 2007, the SKC Program began as an independent source, without funding. As demand for capturing essential spacesuit knowledge increased, consequently, the SKC Program’s funding increased. Expansion of the SKC Program was evident in 2019, when it seized the opportunity to capture the Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU) buildup at JSC. In 2021, its collaboration with the xEMU Technical Community of Practice facilitated training and knowledge sharing with the xEMU team. In 2022, the SKC Program began supporting the EHP. This paper describes the SKC Program’s expansive evolution, plans to support the EHP, and more.


Cinda Chullen, NASA Johnson Space Center(JSC), USA
Vladenka R. Oliva,
Gordon M. Andrews,
Diana L. Rodgers,
ICES307: Collaboration, Education Outreach, and Public Engagement
The 52nd International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Calgary, Canada, on 16 July 2023 through 20 July 2023.


spacesuit, Extravehicular Activity and Human Surface Mobility Program (EHP), U.S. Spacesuit Knowledge Capture (SKC) Program knowledge, subject-matter expert, lectures, interviews, workshops, legacy spacesuit knowledge, Extravehicular Activity (EVA), Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU)