NASA astronauts conduct 200th spacewalk

NASA astronauts conduct 200th spacewalk

NASA astronauts Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer floated outside the International Space Station (ISS) on Friday, setting a new milestone by successfully conducting 200th spacewalk.

Whitson and Fischer’s spacewalk was shortened by an equipment water leakage, they the duo managed to replace a faulty electronics box. They wasted no time removing the faulty electronics box, and placing a new unit.

NASA commentator Rob Navias revealed that the glitch-affected equipment is the Servicing & Cooling Umbilical (SCU). The glitch was detected as the astronauts were seated in the airlock inside the station.

In a statement, Navias said, “This is the connection point of the component in the airlock itself that provides power, oxygen, cooling water, and communications lines to the two crew members while they are in the process of biding their time, pre-breathing pure oxygen, in the airlock itself.”

The electronics box in question is more than five feet in length, and it is used to supply electrical energy and data to science experiments on the exterior of the ISS. The duo also completed some other tasks, leaving just two undone.

NASA release further informed...

The ExPRESS Carrier Avionics, or ExPCA is located on the starboard 3 truss of the station on one of the depots housing critical spare parts. It will be replaced with a unit delivered to the station last month aboard the Orbital ATK Cygnus cargo spacecraft.

In addition, Whitson and Fischer will install a connector that will route data to the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and help the crew determine the most efficient way to conduct future maintenance on cosmic ray detector.

During the planned 6.5-hour spacewalk, the astronauts also will install a protective shield on the Pressurized Mating Adapter-3, which was moved from the Tranquility to the Harmony module in March. This adapter will host a new international docking port for the arrival of commercial crew spacecraft. Whitson and Fischer also will rig a new high-definition camera and pair of wireless antennas to the exterior of the outpost.

Whitson, who already holds the U.S. record for most spacewalks by a female astronaut, will make this ninth excursion as extravehicular crew member 1, wearing the suit with red stripes. Fischer, extravehicular crew member 2, will wear the suit with no stripes on his first-ever spacewalk.

The first spacewalk in support of International Space Station assembly and maintenance was conducted on Dec. 7, 1998, by NASA astronauts Jerry Ross and Jim Newman during space shuttle Endeavour’s STS-88 mission. Astronauts completed attaching and outfitting of the first two components of the station, the Russian Zarya module and the U.S. Unity module.