SHANNON LUCID'S SPACE SUITMIR TRAINING.
"Sokol KV-2" ("Falcon" in Russian) pressure suit, manufactured by Zvezda. White nylon canvas, royal blue trim, approximately 65 inches tall. Attached pressurized hood, hinged polycarbonate visor securing to blue-anodized aluminum clavicle flange. Sleeves with adjustable articulating cables in upper arm, webbed belt lashings. Pressure gauge on left sleeve, mirror affixed to right sleeve with elastic strap. Detachable gloves. V-shaped double-zip front closure, lace-up crotch covered by triangular Velcro-affixed placket. Anodized aluminum umbilical interfaces on body for electrical, air and coolant supplies, with related cables and hoses. Anodized aluminum pressure equalization valve at center of chest. Support sling wrapping round chest and back, consisting of webbed belts and metal clips; adjustable webbed straps attaching to metal rings on side-seams and at crotch. Pleated knees, cargo pocket on each thigh and each shin, integral boots with soles. Rubberized cloth lining. Patches of the Russian flag on left sleeve and US flag on right; Mir logo centered on chest, NASA and Shuttle logos on either side, name label on chest-webbing in Roman and Cyrillic characters. Leather radio headset with mesh skullcap, gray nylon canvas overshoes tucked into leg pockets. Light discoloration, a few scratches to visor.
THE TRAINING SUIT OF THE SECOND AMERICAN MIR RESIDENT, and of the astronaut who set records for the most hours spent in orbit by a non-Russian, and by a woman.
Lucid was selected for the NASA Astronaut Corps in 1978. Of the six women in this first class with female astronauts, Lucid was the only one who was a mother at the time of being selected. Her first space flight was in June of 1985 on STS-51-G. She flew on three further Shuttle missions, before being named in 1995 as the second NASA astronaut to make a long-duration visit to Mir (the first being Norman Thagard). Her training in Russia began in January 1995, and she spent almost a year at Star City. "Although some Soyuz training was required for emergency drills, most of the training in Russia was aimed at preparing her for the long residence on the space station" (Shayler and Moule, Women in Space, 2005, p 323).
On March 22, 1996, she flew to Mir aboard STS-76 Atlantis. Lucid spent the majority of her 188 days on the space station performing experiments, including growing wheat in a small greenhouse to explore whether astronauts on long-distance flights can grow their own food. She returned to Earth on board STS-79 Atlantis on September 26, 1996, having traveled over the course of her mission 75.2 million miles.
The Sokol KV-2 suit was categorized as a "rescue suit" since it was not suitable for EVA use, but was designed to protect the wearer in the event of spacecraft depressurization. It could safely be worn for a few hours in a vacuum. Lucid would have worn a Sokol during the docking of Space Shuttle Atlantis with Mir at the beginning and end of her stay on the space station. The KV-2 remains the current version of the suit, and is lighter still than its predecessors mainly due to new materials used in the pressure layer. The visor is larger than that of the original Sokol K, laces have been replaced with zippers, and mobility at the joints has been improved.
The present suit has been exhibited at: International Space Symposium, Colorado Springs, April 2001; Space Center Houston (JSC Visitor Center), 2002-2004; Science Museum Oklahoma (then called the Omniplex), 2004; George W. Bush Presidential Library, 2008-2009. Included in the lot is a copy of a letter signed by Zvezda Director G.I. Severin, confirming this was Lucid's training suit.
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