NASA has successfully completed its first space walk since March.
American astronauts Frank Rubio and Josh Cassada returned to the interior of the International Space Station (ISS) on Tuesday afternoon after a successful extravehicular activity (EVA) that lasted 7 hours and 11 minutes.
The debut spacewalks for Rubio and Cassada came just over six weeks after the pair arrived at the orbital outpost aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft as part of SpaceX’s Crew-5 mission.
NASA livestreamed the entire EVA, at one point tweeting a spectacular view of Earth captured by Cassada’s helmet camera, with the caption: “We love an office with a view.”
We love an office with a view!@NASA_Astronauts Josh Cassada’s helmet cam captures a pristine view of Earth as he works in tandem with astronaut Frank Rubio to install an IROSA (ISS Rollout Solar Array) modification kit on the @Space_Station. pic.twitter.com/DTeJINPKsy
— NASA (@NASA) November 15, 2022
The pair completed most ofthe main objectives of the EVAincluding the installation of a mounting bracket on the starboard side of the station truss assembly in preparation for the installation of a pair of ISS deployment solar arrays as part of ongoing work to upgrade the power supply of installation.
Tuesday’s EVA was the 254th spacewalk in support of space station assembly, upgrades and maintenance work since the ISS became operational.just over two decades ago.
NASA halted its spacewalking program eight months ago after an EVA incident in which moisture began to appear inside the helmet of German astronaut Matthias Maurer.
Maurer was uninjured, but NASA described it as a “close decision” and decided to suspend ISS spacewalks while it conducted an investigation to find out exactly what happened.
Officials found that the spacesuit had functioned as usual and showed no problems, believing instead that the moisture was condensation caused by the effort of the astronauts and the cooling settings in the Maurer’s space suit. Engineers reviewed preparation processes for future EVAs and modified the suit design to ensure that any excess moisture that appears during a spacewalk is effectively absorbed.
NASA’s suspension of proceedings did not lead to the cancellation of all spacewalks on the ISS. Five spacewalks have taken place since March, organized by NASA’s Russian counterpart Roscosmos and involving mainly Russian crew members.
The next two NASA-led spacewalks are scheduled for Tuesday, November 29, and Saturday, December 3.