Early spacesuits (like the SK-1 or the Mark IV) were designed before anyone had gone into space. How did they test that the suits would perform well in a vacuum? Did they send them into space with sensors inside? Did they have large vacuum chambers to put them in?

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    $\begingroup$ The pressure difference between the inside of the suit and space can also be simulated by increasing the pressure inside the suit. This pressure difference is only 0.3 bar (250-300 hPa) but with much higher oxygen levels (lower nitrogen levels). But other problems of spacesuits are also the lack of confection and conduction of heat, so you only have thermal radiation the exchange heat with your surrounding. $\endgroup$
    – fibonatic
    Dec 6, 2013 at 20:13
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    $\begingroup$ Of course they built vaccuum chambers for ground tests. $\endgroup$
    – Uwe
    Aug 9, 2017 at 21:06

1 Answer 1


They were tested in vacuum chambers. They actually still do, it's by far simpler than sending something in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and beyond to later realize they need to make changes to it. Vacuum chambers also allow for a controlled depressurisation and repressurisation, which is another advantage to having them tested that way. Some interesting related videos:


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