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astronautix.com Mark Ridge-Suit


Class: Manned. Type: Space Suits. Nation: USA. Manufacturer: Siebe, Gorman and Company.

The first full pressure suit was made by an English firm for the American balloonist Mark Ridge. The suit was taken to 17 torr (25.6 km) pressurised to 11.1 km. The English broke two world records with the Mark Ridge Suit in 1935.

Mark E. Ridge determined in the 1930's that a suitably constructed pressurized suit would allow him to make a record breaking balloon ascent into the stratosphere. Unable to interest the US military, he collaborated with Dr. John Haldane in London. Haldane, a physiologist, had been working with Sir Robert Davis of Siebe, Gorman and Company on development of deep sea diving suits. Haldane and Davis fabircated a hypobaric protection suit for Ridge by substantially altering one of their diving suits. The suit was tested in Haldane's pressure chamber up to a simulated altitudes of up to 25,600 m. Ridge himself never used the suit, but another article based upon the Ridge-Haldane-Davis design was flown to a British altitude record of 15,000 m by a Royal Air Force Lieutenant in 1936.


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Last update 12 March 2001.
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