September 8, 2022
Commercial space leader Axiom Space has announced it has been awarded the first task order of NASA’s Extravehicular Activity Services Contract. Under the terms of the task order, which has a base value of $228.5 million, the company will build the space agency’s next generation astronaut spacesuits to support the Artemis lunar missions.
The new spacesuits by the Axiom Team, which includes Tucson’s Paragon Space Development Corporation, will provide astronauts with advanced capabilities for space exploration while providing NASA commercially developed human systems needed to access, live, and work in microgravity as well as on and around the Moon.
This is the first task order awarded under the firm fixed price contract Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity Contract, which extends over a 10-year ordering period and allows for two additional years for completion of services. Authorization to perform work under the xEVAS contract occurs through the issuance of NASA task orders not to exceed $3.1B with a ceiling of $3.5B for all services.
“Our team at Axiom Space is honored to be awarded this first task order to build the next-generation spacesuit. We are excited to provide our expertise to meet NASA’s exploration needs, while simultaneously serving our commercial customers in low Earth orbit and fulfill future space station goals that enable a commercial space economy,” said Michael Suffredini, Axiom Space’s president and CEO. “Our modernized, evolvable spacesuits will enable rapid upgrades to implement better, safer technologies over time, ensuring our astronauts are always equipped with high performing, robust equipment. We look forward to providing our space pioneers with advanced tools needed to further humanity’s permanent expansion off the planet.”
NASA will land the first woman on the Moon wearing Axiom’s xEVAS spacesuits beginning with Artemis III. Using innovative technologies and a flexible design, the xEVAS will enable exploration of more of the lunar surface than ever before. Returning to the Moon is vital for scientific discovery, economic benefits, and inspiration for a new generation of explorers: the Artemis Generation. Maintaining American leadership in space exploration will build a global alliance and advance deep space exploration to benefit all of humanity.
Axiom’s xEVAS spacesuits accommodate a wide range of crew members. Building off NASA’s xEMU spacesuit design, the Axiom spacesuits are created to provide increased flexibility and specialized tools to accomplish exploration needs and expand scientific opportunities in space. The xEVAS spacesuits design includes life support, pressure garments, and avionics. The Axiom Space team will provide xEVA systems training and real-time operations support to NASA, among other services.
Axiom Space has partnered with a strong team of industry experts on this contract including Paragon, KBR, Air-Lock, Arrow Science and Technology, David Clark Company, Sophic Synergistics, and A-P-T Research.
Article courtesy of BizTucson