The Expedition 46 crew begins its first full week of the New Year planning for a spacewalk scheduled for Jan. 15. The orbiting residents are also busy with numerous science experiments benefitting life on Earth and future astronauts.
A pair of spacewalkers will replace a failed voltage regulator to return power to one of eight power channels next Friday. Two crew members will exit the Quest airlock and work outside for 6.5 hours for the replacement work. They will also rig cables for the future installation of docking adapters that will enable commercial crew vehicles to dock at the International Space Station. Final spacewalking roles will be confirmed following spacesuit hardware checkouts taking place today.
NASA astronauts Tim Kopra and Commander Scott Kelly collected and stowed blood and urine samples this morning for the Fluid Shifts study. That experiment observes the headward fluid shift caused by microgravity that increases brain pressure and pushes back on the eye. British astronaut Tim Peake also explored particles suspended in fluids, or colloids, which could benefit the design of advanced materials on Earth.