ISS crew to repair defective gyroscope July 1

The ISS (International Space Station) crew is to perform yet another space walk in the early hours of July 1, trying to repair a defective US gyroscope, Valery Lyndin, spokesman for the Russian mission-control center, told RIA Novosti.

ISS hatches are to open at 1.40 a.m. Moscow time, Lyndin noted. Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka and US astronaut Michael E. Fincke will spend six hours working on the station's outer surface, Lyndin added; in his words, both men are to return inside at 7.40 a.m. Moscow time.

According to Lyndin, Padalka and Fincke had checked spacesuits July 28, subsequently relaxing July 29.

Instead of donning their spacesuits, both men merely checked all spacesuit systems, Lyndin went on to say.

Experts also found out the cause of the first unsuccessful space walk that was to have taken place in the early hours of June 25; such spacewalk had been postponed several times before. According to experts, Michael Fincke didn't turn the injector handle completely, thus causing spacesuit pressure to drop sharply at the beginning of that space walk. (The injector is a built-in pump, which sends oxygen from the oxygen tank into the spacesuit itself - Ed.)

Two out of the orbiter's four US-made gyroscopes are still functioning today; that's why the ISS attitude-control system doesn't work properly, with the crew using station engines, which burn up extra fuel, to align the orbiter. Meanwhile the Soviet Mir orbital station's gyroscopes were located inside.

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Author`s name: Editorial Team