Crew Fills Tuesday With Spacewalk Preps, Science and Cargo Ops

Expedition 61 Commander Luca Parmitano assists astronauts Andrew Morgan and Christina Koch in their U.S. spacesuits
Expedition 61 Commander Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency) assists NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan (left) and Christina Koch (right) in their U.S. spacesuits.

Tuesday was packed with more spacewalk preparations along with ongoing microgravity research aboard the International Space Station. The six-member Expedition 61 crew also conducted emergency response training and cargo transfers from a Japanese cargo craft.

NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan and Christina Koch are going out on their second spacewalk together Friday at 7:50 a.m. EDT. The duo today reviewed spacewalk procedures and set up the tools they will use to continue upgrading the station’s large nickel-hydrogen batteries with newer, more powerful lithium-ion batteries.

Commander Luca Parmitano serviced U.S. spacesuit components and practiced Canadarm2 robotics maneuvers to support Friday’s excursion. NASA TV coverage begins its live coverage of October’s second spacewalk at 6:30 a.m.

Morgan had a few moments set aside Tuesday to swap batteries inside Astrobee, the free-flying robotic assistant being tested aboard the orbiting lab. Afterward, he joined NASA Flight Engineer Jessica Meir inside Japan’s HTV-8 resupply ship to continue unpacking crew supplies and station hardware.

Koch switched to space gardening after spacewalk reviews and watered plants in the Columbus laboratory module. She and Meir finally wrapped up the workday with some light maintenance work in the station’s environmental health system.

All six crewmembers, including cosmonauts Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Skripochka, reviewed emergency roles and responsibilities after lunch today. The crew familiarized itself with safety gear, communication protocols, escape paths and evacuation procedures.

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