KATHMANDU: NASA is broadcasting live International Space Station (ISS) expedition on a SpaceX’s Crew Dragon, being performed by NASA astronauts Chris Cassidy and Robert Behnken today, at 10:00 UTC (6:00 am EDT/ 3:45 pm in Nepal).
The astronauts are scheduled to depart the ISS’s Quest airlock for the second time for a spacewalk that will also require them to complete an upgrade to a power channel — ageing nickel-hydrogen batteries — on the station’s far starboard truss (S6 Truss).
— Intl. Space Station (@Space_Station) July 1, 2020
NASA TV’s live coverage of the spacewalk can be viewed on NASA Television and the agency’s website.
The primary schedule of the program has been planned as follows:
6 am – ISS Expedition 63 US Spacewalk #66 Coverage (Spacewalk scheduled to begin at 7:20 am EDT with Cassidy and Behnken; expected to last up to 7 hours)
4 pm – ISS Expedition 63-64 Crew News Conference (Rubins, Ryzhikov, Kud-Sverchkov)
The two astronauts began the battery replacement work, to this initial power channel, during a spacewalk on June 26.
Astronauts cherish every opportunity to be part of a #spacewalk, and yesterday was no different. @AstroBehnken and I completed the first step in updating the external batteries which are connected to the outboard starboard solar arrays on @Space_Station. pic.twitter.com/hsE0bJld5t
— Chris Cassidy (@Astro_SEAL) June 27, 2020
One of the blogs of NASA explains that the upgrade includes removing six aging nickel-hydrogen batteries and replacing them with three new lithium-ion batteries and the adapter plates that complete the power circuit to the new batteries.
The duo will set their spacesuits to battery power about 7:35 am EDT Wednesday, signifying the start of their spacewalk, which will last between six and seven hours.
As per NASA’s official website, Cassidy and Behnken also will route power and ethernet cables in preparation for the installation of a new external wireless communications system with an enhanced HD camera and increase helmet camera coverage for future spacewalks. To support future power system upgrades, they also will remove a device called an “H-Fixture” that was installed before the solar arrays were launched to the space station.
This is the 229th spacewalk in support of space station assembly and maintenance.
Cassidy will be extravehicular crew member 1, wearing the spacesuit with red stripes, while Behnken will be extravehicular crew member 2, wearing the spacesuit with no stripes. This would be the eighth spacewalk for both the astronauts.