NASA is broadcasting a live stream of the spacewalk being performed by astronauts Chris Cassidy from NASA and Luca Parmitano from the European Space Agency. The two astronauts will spend more than six hours outside of the International Space Station to perform routine maintenance and upgrade some of the equipment.
The spacewalk began at 8:02 a.m. EDT and will last for approximately 6.5 hours, NASA notes. This will be first of two spacewalks scheduled for July, and the astronauts will be performing routine maintenance and upgrades to ISS equipment. For Cassidy, this will be his fifth spacewalk, while it will be Parmitano’s first, ESA notes. Parmitano will also be the first Italian to perform a spacewalk while being the first ESA astronaut to walk in space since 2008.
The astronauts will repair two antennas and a failed KU-receiver box, NASA notes. Parmitano will be taking photos, and a camera mounted inside his helmet will beam back video of the two astronauts working. Parmitano will be taking pictures of Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer-02, which is being used to collect data on dark matter in the universe, to check for any damage and assess its condition. Cassidy is currently replacing a failed Space-to-Ground Transmitter Receiver Controller, NASA notes. Parmitano will be working to replace two experiments, the Optical Reflector Materials Experiment III and the Payload Experiment Container, and replacing a camera system, NASA notes.
The two astronauts work on different sides of the ISS during the first part of the spacewalk. Parmitano and Cassidy will then reconvene to work together to install a set of radiator grapple bars, which can be used to remove radiators aboard the ISS. The second spacewalk is scheduled for July 16 and will involve routing cables to different parts of the ISS.
The NASA live stream of Cassidy and Parmitano’s spacewalk can be viewed below. The space agency is providing views of the repairs from the astronauts while also providing insight about what Cassidy and Parmitano are working on.
Charles Poladian joined IBTimes in October 2012 and, when not reporting on all things topical, can be found reading or photographing concerts.