Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s

The always interesting and highly entertaining Retronaut has just scanned and published a series of pages from a 1956 article titled, "Here's What We'll Wear in Space." Though it wouldn't happen for another five years, it was becoming quite obvious that that time had come to prepare for space. Here's what the experts thought we'd be wearing.

Advertisement

Lloyd Mallan, the author of the original article, noted that these spacesuits were being designed not by stylists, but by "biophysicists, anthropologists, electronic scientists, and doctors of medicine."

Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s
Advertisement

He wrote:

But they have one thing in common: all are willing to risk their own necks to perfect equipment that will make it safe for other men to fly through the alien vacuum of space. Acting as their own guinea pigs, they are locked into altitude chambers, spun wildly on centrifuges, and closed up in insulated rooms. In the process, they discover whether or not their space fashions are practical. And in order to be absolutely certain they plunge needles into their veins and spines, under their skin and over their brains. Wires connected to the needles carry their slightest physical reaction.

Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s

Early full pressure suit was not efficient. It looks impressive but it was clumsy and restrictive. Air Force has developed new space suit: the design is Top Secret.

Advertisement
Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s

Gee, this looks eerily familiar.

Advertisement
Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s

"Open the pod bay doors, Hal."

Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s
Advertisement

Testing the suits to see if they'll withstand the pressures of explosive decompression. Mallan wrote, "Problems of living in the alien vacuum of space are being solved."

Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s
Advertisement

Ah, finally some signs of modernity.

Illustration for article titled This is how we envisioned spacesuits back in the 1950s
Advertisement

Seriously?

Much more, including full hi-res scans of pages and text at Retronaut.

Advertisement

Share This Story

Get our newsletter