NASA Astronauts Whitson and Fischer Conduct 200th Spacewalk at the ISS

Mandy Carr
Мая 13, 2017

NASA said on Friday it would revamp plans for a spacewalk outside the International Space Station after a cable that supplies power, oxygen, cooling water and communications to one of the astronaut's spacesuits started to leak.

Despite the initial trouble, it was a milestone moment as Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer floated outside on the station's 200th spacewalk. It provides power, cooling and communications capability to the spacesuit before the astronauts exit the space station, according to Rob Navias, the NASA TV commentator for Friday's excursion.

Mission Control says Fischer's suit is fine.

Spacewalks usually last about six-and-a-half hours, but Friday's was "abbreviated" due to the late start and lasted four hours and 13 minutes, Navias said.

The pair breezed through their first priority, replacing a faulty, 200-pound (90 kg) electronics box that routes commands and data to experiments.

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The spacewalk officially began at 9:08 a.m. EDT.

With a full-duration 6.5-hour spacewalk, Whitson would have moved up to third in the world with almost 60 hours of EVA time over nine excursions, trailing only cosmonaut Anatoli Solovyev, with 78 hours and 21 minutes of spacewalk time over 16 EVAs, and retired astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, with 67 hours and 40 minutes over 10 excursions. This marked Fischer's first spacewalk, and he could be heard on NASA's live stream soaking in Earth's beauty from 250 miles above the planet. She's also spent more time in space than any other American, 552 days over three missions and counting.

With landing September 3, Whitson's total time in space over three missions will stand at 666 days, moving her up to eighth in the world, just behind Yurchikhin at No. 7 with 673 days in orbit and six other cosmonauts.

The spacewalk was supposed to take place in early April, but was put on hold because of delays in launching the replacement box. NASA is especially wary of leaks involving spacesuits. That prompted the United States space agency to shorten the outing and assign the astronauts just one task.

The first spacewalk ever conducted at the station was on December 7 that year.

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