Astronauts replacing space station's old batteries in first of five spacewalks

James Marshall
October 9, 2019

NASA had originally planned to have the first all-female spacewalk in March, but that plan fell apart due to a lack of properly fitted spacesuits.

She will also be part of the first all-woman spacewalk with her colleague Anne McClain.

Well, in September, Jessica joined the team at the I.S.S. and brought an extra space suit with her so now the first all-female spacewalk can happen, space.com reports.

Expedition 61 flight engineers Christina Koch and Andrew Morgan worked in the vacuum of space for 7 hours and 1 minute on Sunday (Oct. 6). Summer Worden, McClain's spouse, accused the astronaut of identity theft and improper access to her private financial records from space. They are set to install lithium-ion batteries to better serve the station's power supply.

NASA space explorer Jessica Meir, working from inside the station, at that point utilized the Canadarm2 mechanical arm to reposition the bed so the main substitution battery was inside reach of the spacewalkers.

All of NASA's spacewalks are broadcast live over the internet and terrestrial television, putting you right in the middle of the action.

Koch and Meir have trained together for the last six years, as they're members of the same astronaut class. The agency lists 38 active astronauts on its website; 12 are women.

Since the world's first spacewalk in 1965, only 14 women have done them, versus 213 men, according to NASA.

Meir is the third Mainer, and first ME woman, to enter into outer space, the others being Christopher Cassidy, a York High School graduate who has completed six spacewalks and served as the nation's chief astronaut from 2013 to 2017, and Charles O. Hobaugh, a Bar Harbor native who has made three spaceflights.

"It's an honor to follow in Peggy's footsteps", Koch said. All five will be done by Morgan and Parmitano because the work to fix the AMS requires special skills versus the more generic training that includes activities like battery replacements.

Koch is scheduled to remain in orbit until February.

The space station is powered by eight large solar array wings, four on each side of the truss.

"It turns out that over the next couple years, we're having a lot of medium suit people fly", said NASA's space station program manager, Kirk Shireman.

This news came as part of the agency's briefing which offered a preview of 10 upcoming spacewalks on the International Space Station.

"It's just normal", she said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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