DEC 19, 2015 9:03 AM PST

ESA Astronaut Tim Peake to Assist Astronauts on Upcoming Spacewalk

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

It was just this week that the European Space Agency (ESA) sent British astronaut Tim Peake to the International Space Station via a Russian Soyuz spacecraft to join Expedition 45 and to carry out experiments over the course of his 6-month duties aboard the International Space Station.
 
The astronaut went up into space with two additional space men – NASA’s Tim Kopra and Roscosmos’ Yuri Malenchenko – replacing the three astronauts that recently returned to Earth and joining NASA’s Scott Kelly and Roscosmos’ Mikhail Kornienko and Sergey Volkov aboard the International Space Station.
 
This week, Peake may be helping on his most important mission yet, and that’s helping NASA’s Scott Kelly and Tim Kopra as they go outside of the International Space Station in their ultra-expensive space suits to perform a spacewalk and try to fix a damaged rail known as a “mobile transporter” that the International Space Station’s robotic arm relies on to move all around the International Space Station.
 

Tim Peake aboard the International Space Station.


It’s thought that a stuck brake handle could have something to do with the rail not allowing the arm to move freely, although because it hasn’t yet been evaluated up close, it’s still too close to judge at this point in time.
 
Peake will remain inside of the International Space Station while the other two astronauts do their job, and it will be Peake that helps guide them through getting their space suits on and managing the air locking mechanism that keeps the International Space Station’s oxygen supply from leaking out into the vacuum of outer space.

The event could occur as early as this Monday, according to NASA, but may even be later in the future depending on the situation. Since it's Peake's first time in space, and the first time that the U.K. has ever sent an astronaut to the International Space Station, it's a pretty big deal.
 
For Scott Kelly and Tim Kopra, spacewalks are nothing new; Kelly has been on a total of three spacewalks during his career as an astronaut aboard the International Space Station, including one recent spacewalk where he upgraded components and performed some routine maintenance, and Kopra has been on two of them.
 
Over the weekend, the astronauts will be coming up with a plan to try and fix the stuck brake handle so that the robotic arm can continue to get where it needs to go. It’s estimated that such a repair could take about three and a half hours to complete, although schedules have been known to be shorter or longer depending on the situation, so that’s not a solid time to go by just yet.
 
If it can be fixed, then great, but if it can’t be fixed so easily, then it’s a good thing that NASA might be getting a huge budget increase because they might need it.

Source: Space.com

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
DEC 09, 2019
Space & Astronomy
DEC 09, 2019
How Close is SpaceX to Sending Humans to Space?
NASA is one of the world’s most capable space agencies, but a crippling budget prevents it from developing a new space vehicle of its own. Instead, N...
JAN 19, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 19, 2020
A Brief Summary of Everything We Know About Pluto
Pluto was once considered one of the solar system’s planets but was later downgraded to the status of ‘dwarf’ planet after several more s...
JAN 27, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 27, 2020
How Dangerous is Radiation on Mars?
One of humankind’s most ambitious goals for the next decade is preparing to send astronauts to Mars for the very first time. Such a feat is projected...
MAR 03, 2020
Space & Astronomy
MAR 03, 2020
What Makes Black Holes So Mysterious?
Black holes are mysterious objects that have long tickled the interest of astronomers and physicists alike. They’re often described as ultra-dense ob...
MAR 11, 2020
Cell & Molecular Biology
MAR 11, 2020
Generating Human Tissues in Space
Researchers from the University of Zurich are studying how weightlessness impacts the production of human tissue....
MAR 16, 2020
Space & Astronomy
MAR 16, 2020
What Would it Take to Visit Alpha Centauri?
Humankind has long pondered upon the ambition of becoming a multiplanetary species. While much of our realistic focus resides right here in our own solar s...
Loading Comments...