On Friday, two of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration astronauts ventured outside the International Space Station for a spacewalk to perform a plumbing work have encountered a minor glove damage and leaking ammonia. However, NASA has confirmed that it was a very minor incident and it wasn’t a dangerous situation at all.
Two NASA astronauts have been assigned to restore a truss cooling system on the complex back to its original configuration. When Kjell Lindgren, one of the pair, connecting the truss cooling line, reportedly encountered intermittent flashing flakes of toxic ammonia, and immediately assured Mission Control that the incident was a very minor leak. Later, Mission Control has also stressed about the safety of those astronauts and said they were in no danger.
Kjell Lindgren was paired with the International Space Station’s commander Scott Kelly who is also NASA’s one-year spaceman to complete a task of 6 and half hours of spacewalk for the restoration of the cooling system. When the mission entered into its 4th hour, the toxic ammonia flakes spewed out.
Initially, there were concerns about the possibilities of any spacesuit contamination, but later they have followed certain procedures to remove any traces of ammonia from the suit by exposing to the sun. After a few minutes, Scott Kelly has reported that his right glove’s forefinger had a stitch poking out that was looking like a loop.
This isn’t the first time. So far, many spacewalkers have been exposed to or sprayed with the dangerous toxic substances, but the ISS’ outdoor cleanup process has always helped the spacewalkers to clean up their spacesuits.
Before heading out to the spacewalk, Scott Kelly has tweeted:
— Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly) November 5, 2015
Kjell Lindgren and Scott Kelly are in more than halfway (227th day, as of writing) of a United States’ record-setting yearlong flight in space, and they have performed a spacewalk already, on 28th November (a robot-arm lube job and other mundane maintenance). In their second spacewalk on Friday, November 6, they began the mission an hour early to complete the assigned jobs eagerly.
Three years ago, the ISS’ cooling system was facing a minor leakage in the cooling lines and was fixed by making jury-rigged repairs to stop the leak. On Friday, these astronauts have been assigned to restore the repair works to bring back to the original configuration. The earlier-leak was already fixed by changing the failed pump, and NASA wanted them to revert the original configuration of the cooling line.
Scott Kelly will be returning to the Earth in March 2016, and he is already set a U.S. record by staying in space for more than 227 days already. According to NASA, Friday’s spacewalk was the 190th spacewalk in the International Space Station’s seventeen-year history.
Watch this video of spacewalk: