90.7 WMFE and 89.5 WMFV are Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming and Classical Music. Part of the community since 1965, providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Boeing Reveals Suits For Starliner Astronauts

Former Shuttle Astronaut and Boeing's Director of Crew & Mission Systems tests out the pressure suit in a Starliner mock-up. Photo: Boeing

Boeing unveiled a new spacesuit that will protect some of the first astronauts launching to space from US soil since the Shuttle program ended.

Private company Boeing, along with SpaceX, will send astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA’s Commercial Crew program. Currently, NASA pays Russia for rides to orbit.

The royal-blue suits are 40 percent lighter than any other spacesuit, an the helmet portion is soft, like a hoodie sweatshirt. The hood has a wide visor to provide greater field of vision.

Boeing’s spacecraft, called the Starliner, uses mostly touch-screens to operate. Boeing’s Director of Crew & Missions Systems Chris Ferguson said that’s something designers had to consider when making parts of the suit.”Because it’s a glove, it has to work through the stitching of the hand, so there’s a capacitive carry through that enables us to use a touchscreen.”

Ferguson said Reebok helped designed the boots.

Boeing plans to launch an unpiloted test flight next year.

Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida news, updates on special programs and more.

Stay tuned in to our local news coverage: Listen to 90.7 WMFE on your FM or HD radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” and you’ll be connected.

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Are We There Yet?' Host

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration. Brendan is a native Floridian, born and raised in Broward County. He moved to ... Read Full Bio »