NASA's Discovery crew completes mission's last spacewalk

Despite a snag, astronauts complete installation of ammonia tank outside space station

NASA space shuttle Discovery astronauts wrapped up their third and final spacewalk this morning after successfully attaching a new ammonia tank to the International Space Station.

During a six-hour, 24-minute spacewalk this morning, Mission Specialists Rick Mastracchio and Clayton Anderson also relocated a portable foot restraint and readied cables on the backbone of the station for installation of a spare Space to Ground Ku-Band antenna .

The astronauts did hit have difficulty securing a used-up ammonia tank that had been removed from the station walls in the space shuttle's cargo bay. The trouble forced a delay in the spacewalk, forcing NASA to postpone plans to "retrieve a light-weight adapter plate assembly from the Columbus laboratory."

The astronauts were able to finally secure the old ammonia tank in preparation for its return to earth aboard the shuttle, and to complete the installation of a new one outside the space station. The ammonia tank is part of the space station's cooling system

Various shuttle missions over the past year have been focusing on bringing new equipment, spare parts and supplies to the space station. NASA is trying to stock it up before its space shuttle fleet, which has been the cargo workhorse for the station, is retired. The last shuttle flight is scheduled for September, though NASA's Inspector General recently issued a report predicting that the final flight will be pushed back to some time next year.

Discovery was launched early in the early morning hours on Monday, April 5 from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carrying about 17,000 pounds of supplies and equipment to the space station.

Late last week NASA officials added a day to the now 14-day mission. The astronauts will use the extra day in space to conduct an inspection of the shuttle's heat shield.

The crew did a standard check of the heat shield the day after the shuttle was launched. However, a malfunctioning Ku-Band antenna on Discovery meant that the information could not be sent immediately down to Mission Control for analysis. The follow-up inspection will be conducted while the shuttle is docked to the space station so communication instruments on the station can send the data to Earth.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags NASAspace shuttle discoveryspace

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Sharon Gaudin

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?