Karen Fiegen heading “into space”

Karen Fiegen of Roseville is leading a team of five apparel design students (all women) from the University of Minnesota College of Design to the Johnson Space Center this summer to participate in NASA’s competitive Microgravity University program. The team will head “into space” on NASA’s reduced gravity flight plane (i.e. the vomit comet). During the flight the students will test materials aimed at improving moisture management for astronaut gloves. The current design causes sweat to pool up in the gloves, causing uncomfortable rashes and sometimes, the astronaut’s fingernails to rot away.

The students have proposed three unique design solutions that they’ll test during the flight. This is the first ever all-apparel design student team to participate in Microgravity U--most groups come out of engineering programs.

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