Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Spacewalkers Rig Up Electrical Power Cables

The Endeavour spacewalkers are rigging up power cables that will route electricity from the U.S. side of the International Space Station to the Russian segment of the outpost.

Shuttle mission specialists Drew Feustel and Mike Fincke are stringing the four backup cables between the U.S. Unity module and the Russian Zarya space tug. Linked in low Earth orbit in late 1998, the Unity and Zarya modules were the first two building blocks of the station. The two serve as passageways between the U.S. and Russian sides of the outpost.

The U.S. provides electrical power to the Russian side of the station as part of international agreements that govern station operations. Russian Progress space freighters provide the fuel needed to periodically reboost the station.

So far the views during today's spacewalk almost all have come from cameras on the astronauts' spacesuit helmets. A small, rather faint No. 18 in the bottom left hand corner of a view indicates the image is coming from Feustel's helmet cam. A faint No. 20 shows the view is coming from Fincke's helmet cam.

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