Spacewalk cut short due to spacesuit water leak


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Today’s spacewalk at ISS to repair a failed voltage regulator of the station’s power system has been cut short because a water bubble had appeared inside one of the astronaut’s spacesuit.

The astronauts are presently in the airlock about to remove their spacesuits, so it appears they are not in danger. However, this problem is the return of the earlier water leaks inside NASA’s spacesuits, something that the agency had thought it had solved last year. If it has returned, this is of serious concern, since it suggests that they have not yet pinpointed the chronic cause of the problem.

It should be noted that the astronauts had successfully replaced the voltage regulator prior to the premature conclusion of their spacewalk. They had had other less critical tasks on their schedule which they had to forego because of the leak.

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2 comments

  • Tom Billings

    Well, there *are* solutions to the problem. Use skin suits, or better yet, one of the new Associate Administrator Dava Newman’s painted on suits. I wonder if she’ll be appearing at the Astronaut Office with a bright and cheery smile on her face. I know the people who’ve dominated those contracts over the years should be waving bye-bye to any new contracts.

    Of course, slashing the tech development budget, again, hasn’t put NASA in a good place for this. The interesting question for me is how soon could they get to orbit a 3d printer to make new cool suits, or even entire suits. That, of course, would require innovation,and Congress will frown.

  • LocalFluff

    I think a space suit with the problem fixed was lost with the Dragon at launch last year. The payload lost contained unusually valuable equipment for the ISS.

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