Next Station Spacewalk Set for Monday

The Expedition 24 crew enjoyed a full day off Friday after the completion of a second contingency spacewalk Wednesday to replace a failed ammonia pump module. Over the weekend, Flight Engineers Doug Wheelock and Tracy Caldwell Dyson will prepare for a third spacewalk to continue the installation of a spare ammonia pump module on the S1 Truss. That spacewalk is planned for Monday a little before 7 a.m. EDT.

The failed pump module that provided cooling for the International Space Station’s systems was removed from the S1 Truss during Wednesday’s repair spacewalk which lasted 7 hours, 26 minutes. It was temporarily stowed on an external stowage platform adjacent to the Quest airlock. The first repair spacewalk took place Saturday, Aug. 7 and lasted a record 8 hours, 3 minutes.

› Read more about the second spacewalk to replace failed coolant pump

Flight Engineer Shannon Walker has been assisting the spacewalkers from inside the station and operating Canadarm2, the station’s robotic arm. Specialists on the ground carefully plotted the robotic maneuvers necessary for Walker to move the spacewalkers into their work positions. The procedures were sent up for her to practice in between spacewalks.

After the original pump module failed two weeks ago ground controllers powered down numerous station systems and readjusted them to provide maximum redundancy. Mission managers and astronauts on the ground also quickly began choreographing the contingency spacewalks and planning repair procedures. The spacewalks were planned several days apart to give crew members time to rest and managers on the ground time to review data and make necessary adjustments.

Wheelock, designated as EV1, or extravehicular crew member 1, has been wearing a spacesuit with red stripes on the legs. Caldwell Dyson, designated as EV2, has been wearing an unmarked spacesuit. Monday’s spacewalk will be Wheelock’s sixth and Caldwell Dyson’s third.

Approximately two hours after the conclusion of Monday’s spacewalk NASA TV will broadcast a briefing from Johnson Space Center. The briefing participants will include Mike Suffredini, International Space Station program manager; Courtenay McMillan, Expedition 24 spacewalk flight director; and David Beaver, Expedition 24 spacewalk officer.

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