Two astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) completed their first spacewalk that lasted for 7-hours and 16-minutes, NASA has revealed.
It was the first spacewalk for both Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren, who completed almost all of the scheduled tasks that were planned during the spacewalk. The latest spacewalk takes the total number of hours during spacewalks to 1,184, NASA said.
According to the space agency the duo were assigned various tasks including application of thermal cover on the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer; greasing of a number of components in one of the latching ends of the Canadarm2 robotic arm; and work on power and data system cables for the future installation of a docking port to the station that will be used for the arrival of the Boeing Starliner CST-100 and SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft.
NASA said that one of the reasons why the spacewalk was prolonged is that the greasing of the numerous parts of the robotic arm took somewhat longer than anticipated. Despite the few extra minutes, flight controllers chose to forego the lubrication of one component. However, engineers are satisfied the work that was completed sufficiently enhances the performance of the latching end effector. A lower priority task to reinstall a valve on the station will be assigned to crew members during a future spacewalk.
Kelly and Lindgren will venture outside the International Space Station again on Friday, Nov. 6. The two spacewalks were scheduled around milestones in space. Tomorrow, Kelly becomes the U.S. astronaut who has lived in space the longest during a single U.S. spaceflight, and Monday the crew celebrates the 15th year of a continuous human presence in space aboard the station.
During the second spacewalk, the astronauts will restore a truss cooling system to its original configuration following a 2012 spacewalk in which another team of astronauts attempted to isolate a leak of ammonia coolant. They also will top off ammonia on the station’s truss reservoirs. NASA Television coverage will begin at 5:45 a.m. EST ahead of the spacewalk’s planned start time of 7:10 a.m.