25 Apr 2024 10:19

First spacewalk in 2024 under Russian ISS program to take place on Thurs

MOSCOW. April 25 (Interfax) - Russian cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Nikolai Chub are expected to perform a spacewalk outside the International Space Station (ISS) on Thursday to install scientific equipment on the Poisk module.

The cosmonauts will open the hatch to the Poisk module at 5:55 p.m. Moscow time, Roscosmos said. Their spacewalk is to last for six hours and 36 minutes.

Kononenko and Chub are to install equipment for the Kvarts-M and Perspektiva-KM scientific experiments on the Poisk module and try to complete the deployment of a small radar system on the Nauka module, which failed to deploy during the previous spacewalk.

If they have time, the cosmonauts will also dismantle the container for the Biorisk-MSN scientific equipment and will deploy a pressure and deposition control unit on the Poisk module. In addition, Kononenko and Chub will take wipe samples from the surface of the Nauka module.

It will be Kononenko's seventh spacewalk in his career as a cosmonaut, and Chub's second.

During the previous spacewalk under the Russian program, which took place on October 25, 2023, Kononenko and Chub unplugged the radiator circuit from where coolant leaked on October 9, and examined and photographed the site of depressurization. The cosmonauts also launched a student nano-satellite from the Nauka module for the Parus-MGTU experiment testing a solar sail deployment technology.

On October 9, 2023, Roscosmos reported a coolant leak from the Nauka module's backup radiator circuit of the ISS Russian module. It said the module's main thermal regulation circuit was working normally and there was no threat to either the crew or station.

The crew of the 71st long-term mission, made up of Roscosmos cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko, Nikolai Chub and Alexander Grebenkin, as well as NASA astronauts Matthew Dominick, Michael Barratt, Jeanette Epps and Tracy Dyson, is currently working aboard the ISS.