Expedition 68 Flight Engineers Josh Cassada and Frank Rubio of NASA concluded their spacewalk at 4:25 p.m. EST after 7 hours and 11 minutes in preparation for upcoming solar array installation.
Cassada and Rubio completed the majority of the primary objectives for today to assemble a mounting bracket on the starboard side of the station’s truss assembly in preparation for the installation of a pair of International Space Station Rollout Solar Arrays (iROSAs).
The duo completed the routing of cables on the 3A power channel, and began the installation process of a modification kit on the 1B power channel, which will act as a scaffolding for the new solar arrays. The crew deferred some planned tasks associated with the completion of the modification kit, including the installation of collars, and the routing of cables for the 1B power channel. The remaining work will be completed during a future spacewalk prior to the arrival of the solar arrays for the 1B power channel, and no changes are planned for the next two upcoming U.S. spacewalks.
It was the 254th spacewalk in support of space station assembly, upgrades and maintenance, and was the first spacewalk for both astronauts. Cassada and Rubio are in the midst of a planned six-month science mission living and working aboard the microgravity laboratory to advance scientific knowledge and demonstrate new technologies for future human and robotic exploration missions, including lunar missions through NASA’s Artemis program.
The next two U.S. spacewalks are scheduled on Tuesday, Nov. 29, and Saturday, Dec. 3. On Nov. 29, two astronauts will install an iROSA for the 3A power channel, and on Dec. 3 a pair of astronauts will install an iROSA on the port truss for the 4A power channel. These will be the third and fourth iROSAs out of a total six planned for installation. The iROSAs will increase power generation capability by up to 30%, increasing the station’s total available power from 160 kilowatts to up to 215 kilowatts.
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