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HomeNewsOutside the International Space Station, astronauts deploy the fourth deployable solar panel.

Outside the International Space Station, astronauts deploy the fourth deployable solar panel.

The International Space Station (ISS) has its fourth new solar panel thanks to the help of two NASA astronauts during a seven-hour spacewalk.

Frank Rubio and Josh Cassada, both flight engineers from the space station’s Expedition 68 crew, ventured outside the orbiting complex again on Thursday (December 22) to install the Solar Array deployment of the new ISS (iROSA) to increase the station’s capacity. Energy sources. The spacewalk is an extra-orbital operational quasi-operational (EVA) maneuver that Rubio and Cassada conducted nearly three weeks ago, but this time it focused only on an electrical channel located on the portal beam of the spacecraft. station.

The two astronauts also reversed roles, with Rubio serving as the primary spacewalker (EV-1) for Thursday’s spacewalk. Rubio and Cassada began their spacewalk at 8:19 a.m. EST (1:19 p.m. GMT), exiting the US Quest gas lock and quickly embarking on their first assigned missions. When Cassada installed a footrest at the end of the station’s Canadarm2 robotic arm, Rubio configured the cables they would later connect to connect the new array to the station’s 4A power channel.

The two astronauts then worked together to free the iROSA from the platform it was launched from and temporarily dock on the station. Like the array installed on December 3, iROSA 4A was launched into orbit by SpaceX’s CRS-26 Dragon cargo spacecraft, which arrived at the ISS on November 1. 27.

“Heads up, Koichi,” Cassada broadcasts during a pause between moves, “the last hit stopped a little too quickly before me. If you see him speeding up the next turn, you can let me know. is that Okay? That’s amazing.” Despite being weightless in the microgravity environment of space, the 750-pound (340-kilogram) mass still has considerable inertia when moving.

After Rubio released the final pin holding the array in place, Cassada, now positioned at the end of the robot arm, grabbed the part to transport it to the mounting location. Under the control of Canadarm2 is NASA astronaut Nicole Mann, while Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) coordinates with Cassada on the outside.

Rubio moves along the farm to meet Cassada at site P4. The two spacewalkers then opened the iROSA from its launch configuration, then fixed the array on top of a stand installed on the EVA previously. Using a power tool specifically designed for astronauts on spacewalks, Rubio tightens the four latches on the right and left sides of the iROSA to keep the unit open.

After waiting for the space station to be in a “eclipse” or when it was in the Earth’s shadow, so that the wings of the existing solar panels would not generate electricity, Rubio and Cassada then integrated ‘iROSA into the power source. 4A channel power by attaching a new network connection cable to the station.

At that point, all that remained was for the iROSA to unfold. The potential energy stored by the rolled-up carbon composite booms caused the array to unroll on its own to its full 63-foot (19-meter) length with the release of two bolts. “We can finally run that microwave we’ve wanted to run,” Cassada joked, referring to the extra power provided by the new array.

The entire procedure took about 10 minutes. Cassada tightened two bolts to stiffen the array, and it was finished. The ISS Roll-Out Solar Arrays will be installed in front of and partially over existing, slightly deteriorated solar panel wings. When all six iROSAs are in place and used in tandem.

Cassada and Rubio finished their spacewalk by cleaning up and inventorying their tools before returning to the airlock at 3:27 p.m. EST (2027 GMT), seven hours and eight minutes after they began. The excursion on Thursday was originally scheduled for Wednesday, but it was pushed back a day because the space station needed to be maneuvered away from an approaching piece of Russian rocket debris. Both Rubio and Cassada were on their third spacewalk. They have now worked the vacuum of space for 21 hours and 24 minutes.

The EVA was the year’s 12th, Expedition 68’s fourth, and the 257th since 1998 in support of ISS assembly and maintenance.

News Summary:

  • Outside the International Space Station, astronauts deploy the fourth deployable solar panel.
  • Check all news and articles from the latest Space news updates.


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