Remember back in March when NASA was supposed to have the first all-female spacewalk but then it was canceled due to the crazy reason that the spacesuits didn’t fit? Well, the important space milestone is finally happening this month.
In March, it was canceled due to the women needing size medium spacesuits and NASA only having one in that size ready for spacewalking – even astronauts struggle with picking out an outfit. It reportedly would’ve taken too long for the other suit to be ready for a spacewalk so they switched out the astronauts instead.
“When you have the option of just switching the people, the mission becomes more important than a cool milestone,” NASA spokesperson Stephanie Schierholz told The New York Times.
Even if the mission is more important, it’s still an incredibly important milestone. Since 1961, nearly 550 people have been sent to space. Of those, only about 11% have been women.
The all-female spacewalk is set to take place on October 21st. Astronauts Jessica Meir and Christina Koch will swap out the station’s solar panel batteries.
“I think it’s important because of the historical nature of what we’re doing and in the past, women haven’t always been at the table,” Koch said on NASA TV. “There are a lot of people that derive motivation from inspiring stories from people who look like them, and I think it’s an important aspect of the story to tell.”
Mier also expressed her excitement for the spacewalk, saying it speaks to “all of the women” who came before them.
“What we’re doing now shows all of the work that went in for the decades prior, all of the women that worked to get us where we are today,” said Meir.
If you want to watch this moment in history as it happens, the event will be live-streamed on NASA’s website. That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for womankind.