TITUSVILLE, Fla., Nov. 23 (UPI) -- NASA says it has awarded Peter Homer of Southwest Harbor, Maine, a $250,000 first-place prize for developing more flexible space gloves for use by astronauts.
Second place in the space agency's Astronaut Glove Challenge went to Ted Southern of New York who won a $100,000 prize.
The competition sought innovative spacesuit glove design concepts to reduce the effort needed to work during spacewalks, NASA said, noting the competitors demonstrated their glove design by performing a range of tasks in a pressurized chamber. Competitors had to develop a complete glove, including an outer, thermal-micrometeoroid-protection layer and an inner, pressure-restraining layer.
"It is remarkable that two designers working on their own could create gloves that meet the requirements for spaceflight -- a task that normally requires a large team of experts," said Kate Mitchell, an engineer at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston.
The Thursday competition was held at the Astronaut Hall of Fame in Titusville, Fla. The designs presented in the competition were measured and evaluated by engineers from Johnson, the Kennedy Space Center in Florida and NASA's spacesuit manufacturer, ILC Dover of Dover, Del.