Status Report

NASA Space Station Status Report 3 September 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
September 3, 2004
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NASA Space Station Status Report 3 September 2004

Smoothly and ahead of schedule, Expedition 9 Commander
Gennady Padalka and Flight Engineer Mike Fincke completed the
fourth and final spacewalk of their six-month mission today.
Padalka and Fincke spent five hours, 21 minutes outside the
International Space Station (ISS) on maintenance tasks and
installing antennas to prepare for the initial arrival of a
new European cargo spacecraft next year.

Wearing Russian Orlan spacesuits, Padalka and Fincke began
the spacewalk at 12:43 p.m. EDT, emerging from the Pirs
airlock attached to the Zvezda Service Module. It was
Padalka’s sixth career spacewalk and the fourth for Fincke,
all of his conducted during this expedition. The spacewalk
was supervised by Russian flight controllers at the Mission
Control Center in Korolev, outside Moscow.

After setting up tools and tethers, Padalka and Fincke
quickly went to work. On the Zarya module, they replaced a
pump control panel that measures the module’s coolant levels.
They then installed a series of tether guides on four
handrails. The guides are intended to prevent future
spacewalkers’ tethers from becoming snagged.

As the Station moved into orbital darkness, the spacewalkers
took a rest break. During the break, flight controllers in
Houston collected data on the orientation of the orbiting
laboratory. The information will help determine whether the
cooling systems of the Russian spacesuits contribute to
changes in the Station’s orientation. Throughout today’s
spacewalk, the Station remained in predicted orientations. No
unanticipated measures were needed to maintain its stability.

Padalka and Fincke spent two and one half hours on the
exterior of Zvezda, installing three communications antennas
at its aft end. Those antennas, along with other equipment
installed during an Aug. 3 spacewalk, will be used next year.
They will guide the European Space Agency’s unpiloted
Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), the “Jules Verne” cargo
spacecraft, to its maiden docking with the Station. The next
Station crew, Expedition 10, will install three more ATV
navigation antennas in February. The Expedition 11 crew will
install ATV communications gear inside Zvezda as well.

Padalka and Fincke returned to Pirs and installed protective
handrail covers at one of the two airlock hatches. The covers
will ensure tethers do not inadvertently wrap around the

Fincke also photographed a suitcase-sized tray of Japanese
commercial experiments mounted on Zvezda to measure the
effect of micrometeoroids on a variety of materials. Called
Micro-Particle Capturer and Space Environment Exposure
Devices, they were installed on Zvezda almost three years

With their work done, Padalka and Fincke returned to the
airlock and closed the hatch at 6:04 p.m. EDT. The spacewalk
was the 56th in support of Station assembly and maintenance
and the 31st based from the Station. In all, Padalka and
Fincke have spent 15 hours and 45 minutes outside the Station
during their four spacewalks together. To date, spacewalkers
have spent more than 338 hours outside the Station for
maintenance and assembly work.

For information about NASA and agency missions on the
Internet, visit:

Information about crew activities on the Space Station,
future launch dates and Station sighting opportunities from
Earth, is available on the Internet at:

Details about Station science operations are available on an
Internet site administered by the Payload Operations Center
at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.,

SpaceRef staff editor.