America’s rich history of spaceflight is falling apart.
During this year’s Army-Navy football game, US Naval Academy players will wear freshly unveiled NASA-inspired uniforms featuring iconic space agency imagery.
The Naval Academy revealed the uniforms (opens in a new tab) on Monday, November 21, showing designs that feature iconic NASA imagery such as the agency’s famous “worm” and “meatball” logos, the official astronaut pin, and an astronaut in a spacesuit performing a spacewalk.
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In a statement (opens in a new tab) describing the design of the uniforms and the American spaceflight history they honor, the Naval Academy notes the long history of graduates turning to spaceflight. “Fifty-four United States Naval Academy graduates became astronauts, the most of any institution,” the statement said, adding that “the first Naval Academy graduate to become an astronaut was Alan Shepard (’45 ), who was the first American in space (May 5, 1961) and was one of NASA’s first seven astronauts.”
The Naval Academy’s NASA-inspired uniforms are white with a red stripe, a nod to one of NASA’s spacewalk suit color schemes. The typeface (font) on the uniform is Helvetica, the same NASA has used for decades in its official logos and graphics, including on the Space Shuttle.
The pants and gloves of the uniforms both feature the historic astronaut pin; silver pins are given when astronauts complete basic training, while gold pins are given at the end of a spaceflight mission.
One side of the Naval Academy’s NASA-inspired helmets features the iconic image of astronaut Bruce McCandless appearing to float above Earth alone while performing a spacewalk during the STS- 41-B in 1984 while carrying the manned maneuver unit propulsion system.
The other side of the helmet, meanwhile, displays the NASA “worm” logo in red and white above an image of the moon. The uniform is completed with a patch of the USS Enterprise, the US Navy’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier that helped track Friendship 7, America’s first orbital spaceflight.
Even the Naval Academy cleats are NASA-inspired, featuring an all-white design to mimic the boots worn by NASA astronauts on spacewalks. The soles of the cleats are multicolored, evoking the appearance of a nebula seen in deep deep space.
The Naval Academy’s NASA-inspired uniforms will take to the field Dec. 10 when the United States Naval Academy takes on the United States Military Academy in the 123rd Army-Navy game at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.