VSC Logo
Page Header

VSC Q and A

Search for Questions

Ask a new Question


What do Astronauts wear on the Space Station?


jzermeno said...

Astronauts wear various types of clothing for all aspects of a mission to space. Whether they are launching into space, working inside the space station, working outside in space, or landing back on Earth, astronauts wear the right clothes for the job. Space station crews can choose from either Russian or U.S. clothing supplies. They also have the option of ordering two versions of Russian coveralls -- heavy or light-duty -- to work in aboard the space station. Because it's expensive to take supplies into space and there's no washing machine aboard the space station -- in order to save water -- station crews don't change clothes as often as people do on Earth. Of course, since they don't go outside, except in a spacesuit, they don't get as dirty as people living on Earth. They're also able to bathe every day and after exercising. On average, station crew members get one pair of shorts and a T-shirt for every three days of exercising. Their work shirts and pants/shorts are changed, on average, once every 10 days. Crew members generally get a new T-shirt to wear under their work shirts every 10 days. Underwear and socks are changed every other day, but PolartecTM socks, which are worn if a crew member's feet get cold, must last a month. They also get two sweaters. In addition, each crew member gets a pair of running shoes for exercising on the station's treadmill and another pair of shoes to wear when using the station's exercise bicycle. When a piece of clothing has been worn as many times as possible (and as you can imagine is pretty dirty), it's placed in a bag for disposal. Very little clothing is brought home by space station crew members. Most of it is placed in the Russian Progress resupply vehicle before it undocks from the space station. The dirty clothing and other garbage burns up with the Progress when it re-enters the Earth's atmosphere. Of course these clothing items are worn while they are inside the pressurized ISS. When astronauts venture out into the vacuum of space, they must wear a pressurized space suit.

Please login to answer this question. If you don't have an account, now is the best time to register for one!