Space Suits

There were several iconic items of equipment in the Dan Dare strip but two that come to the fore are his primary space ship - the Anastasia (introduced after the first Venus campaign). The other is undoubtedly his space suit.

This changed on a number of occasions but always seemed to return to one main type: the Mark 3. Below is the description of this suit, plus the sapce suit variations over the years.

This is a selection of those illustrations. Please click on the item to enlarge and STRETCH them to the required viewing size.

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The Mk III Space Suit

The Mk III Space Suit

Light Suit

Suit in "Menace from Jupiter"

Lighter Suit

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Late Suit

Digby's Uniforms

Dan's Uniforms

Sub Aqua suit

Suit in "Robocrabs"

Suit in "Project Nimbus"

Dare in a Theron suit

McHoo Suits

Suit in "Operation Saturn"

The Mk III suit in action


The helmet is the nerve centre of the whole suit and is constructed of Hirschinium, a metal alloy of extremely light weight and almost incredible strength, perfected by Erwin Hirshbaum in 1980. One of its most valuable features is that it does not conduct heat at all. In the rear of the helmet in the overhang incorporated to carry them are the tiny electronic automatic control devices to keep the wearer comfortable inside the suit despite the conditions outside.

A thermostatic control keeps the temperature constant through a network of heating wires (9) and cooling channels embedded in the fabric of the suit. A microscopic diaphragrn valve in the outer surface on the top of the helmet connects with an outlet valve in the air tanks built in the crown of the helmet in these tanks a breathable combination of gases is stored in liquid form at an incredibly low temperature which is insulated from the rest of the suit by the non-conducting Hirschinium. This liquid breathing mixture is released into the suit through the outlet valve, which warms and expands it through the Thermovent device invented in 1985 by Lewell Hudson, which overcame the difficulty of returning gases which had been liquefied to their original form. The Diaphragm control releases this gas in sufficient quantities to equalise the pressure of any 'reasonable' atmosphere outside. In space the diaphragm is naturally at Minimum Pressure which does not cut off the supply of breathing mixture but releases just enough for breathing.

Spring-loaded throat microphones press against the wearer's throat and transmit his speech on short range radio on a predetermined wave length which allows it to be received by other suit wearers in the vicinity through the built-in earphones. Long range radio transmission can be used by plugging a 'Walkie Talkie' set into the 2-pin plug on the helmet

As an auxiliary air supply, some helmets are fitted with air intake holes in the bottom of the rear overhang which allow outside atmosphere to enter the helmet through filter pads. The point of this is that for planetary exploration in atmospheres that might contain some usable gases and some in poisonous quantities the filters clean such air in much the same way as a poison gas respirator and allow it through the breathable combination only. In this case a knob is situated on the right hand side of the helmet which the wearer adjusts to cut of the interior supply and adjust the right filters to the intake. Dan and Digby used this type on Venus when they first landed. The external storage pocket of the suit is normally for convenience in carrying tools etc., but for exploration duties it carries a Hyposyringe kit and water making outfit. It is possible to keep alive for a considerable period, in emergency, within the suit, by taking food in the form of injections by the hypodermic syringe. The injections are mode direct into the arm trough the self-sealing fabric of the suit.