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Astronauts Work to Install Ammonia Pump Module on Second Spacewalk

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Tue Dec 24, 2013 1:22 pm via: NASA
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Spacewalkers Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins are conducting a second spacewalk to install a spare ammonia pump module. The duo switched their spacesuits to battery power at 6:53 a.m. EDT signaling the official start of their spacewalk.

Today’s main tasks include the removal and installation of a spare pump module. The first task is to remove the spare pump module from the space station’s External Stowage Platform-3. Finally, the module will be bolted to the S1 truss and connected to Loop A of the station’s external Active Thermal Control System. Mission managers expect the installation work will be completed today but have not ruled out a third spacewalk if necessary.

Hopkins will attach himself to the Canadarm2 and take a ride to the worksite. Mastracchio will tether himself to the station and translate to the S1 truss to assist his partner. Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata will operate the Canadarm2 from inside the cupola maneuvering Hopkins as he installs the spare pump module.

The duo was originally scheduled to finish the installation work on Monday before mission controllers detected a spacesuit configuration issue at the end of Saturday’s spacewalk, in which the spacewalkers removed a faulty pump that experienced a problem with its internal flow control valve Dec. 11. The suspect pump was removed from the starboard truss and parked in a temporary location on the station’s Mobile Base System rail car where it can stay until at least next June. Managers decided an extra day of preparation was necessary to get a backup spacesuit ready for Mastracchio.

Today’s spacewalk marks Mastracchio’s eighth and Hopkins second. This is the 175th in support of space station assembly and maintenance. As of Saturday, Mastracchio holds 43 hours and 58 minutes of spacewalking time during seven spacewalks. Hopkins holds 5 hours and 28 minutes during one spacewalk.

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