Discovery astronauts finish third, final spacewalk

March 24th, 2009 - 11:19 am ICT by IANS  

Washington, March 24 (DPA) Two Discovery space shuttle astronauts completed maintenance work Monday on the International Space Station during the final spacewalk of the ongoing mission in orbit.
During the six-and-a-half hour spacewalk, astronauts Joseph Acaba and Richard Arnold repositioned an equipment cart, deployed an external cargo mounting mechanism, lubricated the space station’s robotic arm and reconfigured cables that power the station’s gyroscopes.

This is the second spacewalk for both Acaba and Arnold and the final spacewalk of the current shuttle flight.

On Friday, the Discovery crew completed installation of the station’s fourth and final pair of solar panels to expand the satellite’s power supply.

Discovery docked March 17 with the International Space Station, bringing cargo including the solar panels.

The mission delivered astronaut Koichi Wakata, who has officially joined the permanent crew on the orbiting space station as its first Japanese member. He replaces US astronaut Sandra Magnus, who will join the Discovery crew for the flight back to Earth.

The shuttle launched March 15 after weeks of delays to inspect and study the hydrogen fuel valves and a later leak in a fuel vent. Discovery is scheduled to end its 13-day mission on Saturday.

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Sci-Tech |