American Rick Mastracchio, 53, and Mike Hopkins, 44 have returned to the decompression chamber of the ISS (International Space Station) at 6:29 p.m. (French time), ending an orbital output 5 hours and 29 minutes – -against 6 hours and 30 minutes initially planned.
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teams on Earth then asked the two astronauts begin tasks originally scheduled for the second orbital scheduled release Monday. The two astronauts and started to remove the faulty ammonia pump, weighing 353 pounds and the size of a refrigerator, which had already been replaced in 2010, for temporarily storing on a nearby section of the ISS.
possible third expedition to the area, which was considered the day of Christmas, now seems less likely, given that Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins would be able to finish installing the new pump on Monday . For orbital ballet, the two astronauts were assisted by the robotic arm on the ISS, 15 meters long, operated from the inside by Japanese Koichi Wakata orchestrates operations.
Photo: AFP / NASA. This is the Japanese Koichi Wakata orchestrates operations within the station by manipulating a robotic arm.
emergency circuit can not provide all the needs
“This repair could not expect too much,” explained NASA had attempted a repair remotely operating a valve to compensate the which is blocked and prevents normal circulation of ammonia into the circuit. If another malfunction occurs in the second air conditioning system, the ISS will then end up in a potentially dangerous situation requiring evacuation of the crew.Since the beginning of this failure, December 11, cooling station is provided by the second circuit, which can not only provide all the needs of the ISS. Non-essential equipment from the station have been shelved. The fault, however, never endangered the six crew members of the ISS, NASA assured.