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. ISS Crew Conduct Back To Back Spacewalks Over Several Days

Expedition 14 flight engineer Suni Williams works on the outside of the International Space Station. Image credit: NASA TV
by Staff Writers
Houston TX (SPX) Feb 04, 2007
Following Sunday's second spacewalk of the series, Commander Mike Lopez-Alegria, with eight spacewalks totaling 54 hours and 42 minutes, now ranks third on the all-time list behind Jerry Ross and Anatoly Solovyev. He will equal Ross' mark of nine spacewalks on Thursday and vault past him into second place for the most spacewalk time by an American astronaut at the 3 hour and 50 minute mark. He surpasses Ross' record for most spacewalks by an American on Feb. 22 during the Russian outing.

Flight Engineer Suni Williams now holds the record for most spacewalk time by a female at 22 hours and 37 minutes and will eclipse the mark she shares with Kathy Thornton for most spacewalks by a female -- three -- on Thursday, Feb. 8. The third spacewalk in nine days by International Space Station Commander Michael Lopez-Alegria and Flight Engineer Sunita Williams is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 8.

The three spacewalks, from the Quest airlock in U.S. spacesuits, and a Russian spacewalk scheduled for Feb. 22 will be the most ever done by station crew members during an increment, said Mike Suffredini, station program manager.

The three spacewalks are termed EVAs 6, 7, and 8 because there were five previous station spacewalks from the U.S. airlock Quest during increments, times when no shuttle was present.

On Feb. 8 Lopez-Alegria and Williams will move from the airlock out to Crew Equipment Transfer Aid carts on the rails of the main truss. Pushing the cart with their equipment, including a foot restraint, they move to the P3 Truss. Their first job is to remove two thermal shrouds from a Rotary Joint Motor Controller (RJMC) on P3.

Next they will remove the two large shrouds from P3 Bays 18 and 20. The shrouds, larger than king-size bed sheets, provide thermal shading. With the station in its present orientation, they are no longer needed. They are being removed to avoid trapping heat.

Spacewalkers will work together to fold each into a package a bit smaller than an outdoor garbage can and jettison them, aft and slightly downward.

The 2-hour, 40-minute shroud task will be followed by deployment of two Unpressurized Cargo Carrier Assembly Attachment Systems (UCCAS), one on the upper face of the P3 truss and the other on the lower face. The hour-long job is in preparation for attachment of a cargo carrier during a subsequent shuttle mission.

While Lopez-Alegria works on the second UCCAS, Williams will move out to the end of the P5 truss to remove two launch locks to prepare for the relocation of the P6 Truss.

Get-ahead tasks include removing a final camera stanchion from External Stowage Platform 3 and moving an auxiliary bag containing contingency items - among them tie-down tethers, cabling and connector caps. The bag will be placed near the airlock before the P6 is moved to the end of the port truss.

Russian Spacewalk

On Feb. 22, Lopez-Alegria and Tyurin are scheduled to do a spacewalk in Russian Orlan suits from the Pirs airlock. They will work on an antenna of the Progress 23 unpiloted cargo carrier, docked at the aft port of the Zvezda service module.

The antenna did not properly retract when that spacecraft docked in October. The spacewalkers will try to secure or remove the antenna to avoid its interfering with the undocking of P23 in April.

earlier related report
Crew Completes Scheduled Spacewalk Tasks, and More

International Space Station Commander Mike Lopez-Alegria and Flight Engineer Sunita Williams wound up the second of a series of three spacewalks at 3:49 p.m. EST Sunday, completing almost all scheduled tasks and one get-ahead task.

The first of the three-spacewalk series was successfully completed Jan. 31. The third is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. next Thursday, Feb. 8.

The first parts of the Sunday spacewalk, EVA 7, were similar to the previous one, though crew members seemed to work through the now-familiar tasks more smoothly. Lopez-Alegria and Williams began the second spacewalk by reconfiguring the second of the two cooling loops serving Destiny from the temporary to the permanent system.

At the rats' nest, Lopez-Alegria reconfigured the fluid loop connections, moving the second pair of the fluid lines of the early system from the lab and connecting them back up to the Z1 panel. That will help enable reactivation of the early cooling system if it should be required. Williams reconfigured electrical connections.

Next they stood by as the ground retracted the aft radiator of the P6. After retraction they installed another set of six cable cinches and two winch bars to secure the radiator and then installed a shroud to cover the radiator.

The spacewalkers then completed work with the Early Ammonia Servicer (EAS) on the P6 Truss. It provided a contingency supply of ammonia for the Early Ammonia System. With the permanent system working, it is no longer needed.

During the Jan. 31 spacewalk, Lopez-Alegria and Williams removed and reconnected to a rats' nest fitting one of two lines linking the EAS with the old cooling system. Sunday they removed the second line and reconnected its end. Those tasks were to prepare to jettison the EAS this summer.

Lopez-Alegria then photographed the inboard end of the P6 starboard solar wing, in preparation for its retraction during the STS-117 mission in March.

Williams brought tools and cables to the forward end of the lab, where Lopez-Alegria joined her. Together they worked on routing and installation of the Space Shuttle Power Transfer System (SSPTS) cables. They worked to reroute the SSPTS cables, a job begun on EVA 6, which will allow the shuttle to draw power from the station's solar arrays. Three final connections will be made during the Thursday spacewalk.

The get-ahead task completed was removal of a sunshade from a multiplexer-demultiplexer, a data-relay device.

Back in the airlock Lopez-Alegria and Williams did some precautionary decontamination porcedures after a few ammonia flakes were seen early in the spacewalk.

The three spacewalks from the Quest airlock in U.S. spacesuits and a Russian spacewalk scheduled for Feb. 22 are the most ever done by station crew members during a single month. They also will bring to 10 the total number of spacewalks by Lopez-Alegria, an astronaut record. Williams will have a total of four, the most ever by a woman.

Starting from scratch, it takes about 100 crew-member hours to prepare for a spacewalk. By doing them a few days apart, considerable crew time can be saved by not having to repeat some of those preparatory steps. Station Crew Members Wind Up Successful Spacewalk

EVA 6

International Space Station Commander Mike Lopez-Alegria and Flight Engineer Sunita Williams wound up a 7-hour 55-minute spacewalk at 6:09 p.m. EST Wednesday. It was the first of an unprecedented series from the Quest airlock.

Two other spacewalks from Quest will follow. Lopez-Alegria and Williams are scheduled to make the second spacewalk on Feb. 4 and the third for Feb. 8. The first two focus on the reconfiguration of station power and cooling systems to permanent ones.

Lopez-Alegria, the lead spacewalker wearing the suit with red stripes, and Williams, in the all-white suit, began the tasks of the first spacewalk by reconfiguring one of the two cooling loops serving Destiny from the temporary to the permanent system.

Working at the "rats' nest," an area near the base of the Z1 Truss with numerous fluid and electrical connections, Lopez-Alegria reconfigured the fluid loop connections, moving two of the fluid lines from the early system from the lab and connecting them back up to the Z1 panel. That will help enable reactivation of the early cooling system if it should be required.

He also connected a cable for the Space Shuttle Power Transfer System (SSPTS). It will allow power from the station's solar arrays to be transferred to a docked space shuttle, beginning with STS-118 in June.

Williams reconfigured electrical connections.

Next the spacewalkers stood by as the ground retracted the starboard radiator of the P6 Truss. After retraction they installed six cable cinches and two winch bars to secure the radiator and then installed a shroud over it.

Lopez-Alegria and Williams then moved to the Early Ammonia Servicer on the P6 Truss. It provided a contingency supply of ammonia for the Early Ammonia System. With the permanent cooling system working, it is no longer needed.

The spacewalkers removed one of two fluid lines from the servicer, which will be jettisoned this summer. Because of Wednesday time constraints, the second will be removed on a subsequent spacewalk.

About 25 minutes of the spacewalk was spent in a "bakeout" after crew members had re-entered the airlock. It was done as a precaution to prevent any possibility of ammonia from the fluid lines the spacewalkers had worked with entering the station.

The three spacewalks from the Quest airlock in U.S. spacesuits and a Russian spacewalk scheduled for Feb. 22 are the most ever done by station crew members during a single month. They also will bring to 10 the total number of spacewalks by Lopez-Alegria, an astronaut record. Williams will have a total of four, the most ever by a woman.

Starting from scratch, it takes about 100 crew-member hours to prepare for a spacewalk. By doing spacewalks a few days apart, considerable crew time can be saved by not having to repeat some of those preparatory steps.

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Astronauts For Shuttle Japanese Experiment Module Kibo Mission Assigned
Tokyo (SPX) Feb 01, 2007
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced the selection of the following astronauts as crew members for the Space Shuttle mission to assemble the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) "Kibo" (1J/A.) The Kibo, which has been developed by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) as part of the International Space Station (ISS) Program, is scheduled to be launched by three Space Shuttle missions.

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