NASA wants you to pick out your favorite of its new spacesuits

Looks like NASA wants to add more zing to its futuristic Z-series spacesuits, because the agency just revealed three far-out outer shell designs for the newest prototype. The new model is a follow-up to NASA’s Buzz Lightyear-esque Z-1 spacesuit prototype, which was named one of Time Magazine’s Best Inventions of 2012. There are several differences between the two, including the quality of their upper torsos: while the Z-1’s is soft, the Z-2’s is hard and impact resistant.

Back in 2012, NASA revealed a Buzz Lightyear-esque spacesuit design called the Z-1 that promised better range of motion and mobility. But now the institute has upgraded the original prototype to the Z-2 and wants the public to choose a design for the outer shell. The Z-2 is an upgrade to the first model, featuring a new hard composite upper torso and other design changes that NASA implemented after testing the Z-1 for two years. While each shell design has thehistorical structure of a spacesuit, all three are odd and unique in different ways. Biomimicry draws inspiration from the ocean, with reptilian-like scaly skin and embedded lights to channel the “bioluminescent qualities” of deep sea fish. 

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