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Bradley students selected in NASA SUITS program

Photo via Bradley Newsroom

This past week, 10 Bradley students were chosen to help in NASA’s next phase for its Spacesuit User Interface Technologies for Students (SUITS) program.

BUEARTH is the name of the group that has been selected for the internship and was notified during a live-stream event on Nov. 17. There are nine other groups for the SUITS program, each consisting of designers, programmers, social media managers and team leaders.

The NASA SUITS program’s goal is to design and develop spacesuits for the Artemis mission in 2024, which plans to land the first woman and next man on the Moon.

This is not the first time Bradley students have been chosen to help with NASA SUITS. Abigail Irwin, a junior user experience design and psychology double major, has been on the team since her freshman year as a design assistant.

“I am very excited about this project,” Irwin said. “I’m looking forward to being in the design lead role as this is my first year as a lead on the project.”

Since Bradley has operated in a hybrid format this semester, the BUEARTH team members have been using Discord for weekly meetings and use the program as a voice chat during design meetings. They then use another design software called Figma for easy access for all to edit the design.

Matthew Kirchoff, a senior game design major, is one of the designers and programmers for the team. Kirchoff is a designer for the project and will be in the development role for the challenge in the future.

“Right now, I have been mostly working on the user interface and the screens for the project for the Augmented Reality system that would be in place on the innermost of the astronaut’s helmets,” Kirchoff said.

According to Zachary Bachmann, a senior computer science major who has been a part of NASA SUITS for four years, NASA SUITS is not a competition. The objective is not to “win.” Rather, teams will present their projects to NASA advisers, and they will pick parts they like from each team’s build.

The presentation is scheduled to take place on April 19, 2021.

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