Friday, 31 March 2017

Spacewalkers successfully connect adapter for commercial crew flights

Two astronauts wandered outside the confines of the International Space Station (ISS) on Friday, accomplishing their tasks of installing communications adapter and shields on the station module.
Expedition 50 Commander Shane Kimbrough and Flight Engineer Peggy Whitson of NASA, who concluded their spacewalk at 2:33 p.m. EDT, successfully reconnected cables and electrical connections on the Pressurized Mating Adapter-3.
PMA-3 will provide the pressurized interface between the station and the second of two international docking adapters to be delivered to the complex to support the dockings of US commercial crew spacecraft in the future.
During the spacewalk, which lasted just over seven hours, Kimbrough and Whitson also installed a different shield around the base of the PMA-3 adapter for micrometeoroid protection.
Having completed her eighth spacewalk, Whitson now holds the record for the most spacewalks and accumulated time spacewalking by a female astronaut.
Spacewalkers have now spent a total of 1,243 hours and 42 minutes outside the station during 199 spacewalks in support of assembly and maintenance of the orbiting laboratory, said NASA.

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