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A giant leap for womankind as NASA unveils new spacesuits for astronauts

NASA worker Kristine Davis demonstrates the new suit. Credit: AP

NASA has unveiled two new spacesuits for astronauts, including the one that will be worn by the first woman on the Moon.

The next generation suits, one to be worn during flight, and the other on the surface of the Moon, were unveiled at NASA headquarters in the US capital, Washington.

NASA has previously stated that it wants to restart exploration to the moon by 2024 at the latest.

Chris Hansen, a manager at NASA's spacesuit design office, said: "This is the first suit we've designed in about 40 years."

The next generation spacesuits were unveiled at NASA headquarters in the US. Credit: AP

The suits have been redesigned to fit all sizes and genders, says NASA, for any missions to the Moon and, ultimately, Mars.

NASA is currently examining the possibility of sending astronauts to Mars and a mission could go ahead in the 2030s.

Earlier this year, NASA had to cancel the first all-female spacewalk, partly because the agency did not have enough spacesuits to fit the astronauts.

In the end, it had to send a male astronaut on the spacewalk because because there were not enough suits to fit both women.

The Orion Crew Survival Suit is worn by Dustin Gohmert, right, and the Moon suit is worn by Kristine Dans. Credit: AP

The first spacesuit unveiled by NASA is called the Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU).

This suit is specifically intended to fit astronauts better and allow them to move more easily."Mobility is one of the biggest things. If you need to pick up a rock … if you're planting a scientific instrument, you need that upper torso mobility," said astronaut Kate Rubins at the unveiling.

It is a red, white and blue suit and will be worn on the lunar surface, specifically the moon's south pole, which is where NASA is planning its next mission.

The second suit is bright orange and known as the Orion Crew Survival System.

It will be worn at launch by astronauts and is designed to provide protection and oxygen to the astronauts in case of any accident.

Neil Armstrong on the surface of the Moon in the first spacesuit. Credit: AP

The suits are the first major redesign since the 1970s and will allow astronauts to walk on the moon, rather than hop like astronauts such as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the famous first missions.

Those first spacesuits were made by Playtex.

The new suits are designed to be far more flexible and will allow astronauts to stretch their hands above their heads.

It should also allow them to work in an astonishing temperature range from 250 degrees Fahrenheit down to -250 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, one thing will not have changed, the astronauts will still have to wear special nappies for their mission.