Italian astronaut returns to ISS after walking break

The Italian astronaut returns to the ISS after a walking break (Photo: ANSA)

The spacewalk of Samantha Cisotoforetti and Oleg Artemyev ended on Thursday evening (21). The European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut and his counterpart from the Russian space agency Roscosmos have returned to the International Space Station and the hatch has been closed.

The two men worked for almost seven hours outside the Russian segment of the Space Station, before the Moscow control center decided to prematurely stop the extravehicular activity for safety reasons related to battery life. that power the astronaut suit support systems.

On this, “it was therefore decided to abandon the last of the operations planned to guarantee the two protagonists of the extravehicular activity the time necessary to return safely to the Space Station”.

Cristoforetti became the first European woman to walk in space. She left the International Space Station (ISS) at 12:00 p.m. (Brasilia time), accompanied by Artemyev.

The two astronauts manually placed 10 mini-satellites in orbit and prepared the structure intended to permanently house the European robotic arm (Era) in the Nauka module – this is the third robotic arm installed to date on the Space Station, after the Canadians and the Japanese, and the first mounted in the Russian segment.

The Italian and Russian also replaced a protective window in a camera light unit at the end of the European robotic arm. But at this stage of the activity, the control center preferred to stop the initiative for security reasons, suspending the last scheduled task.

Cristoforetti and Artemyev were to install a telescopic arm from the Zarya module to the Poisk air chamber to facilitate the movement of crew members on future spacewalks. This operation will therefore have to be carried out during a future spacewalk.

“Once again, Samantha is a trailblazer. Thank you for your role in showing everyone, women and men, what determination and commitment to achieving a goal are,” astronaut Luca Parmitano told ANSA, which, like Cristoforetti, is part of ESA.

Elmer Hayward

"Pop culture fan. Coffee expert. Bacon nerd. Infuriatingly humble communicator. Friendly gamer."

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