NASA astronaut and Expedition 68 Flight Engineer Josh Cassada is photographed on Dec. 3, holding a roll-out solar array as he rides the Canadarm2 robotic arm toward the Starboard-4 truss segment installation site. Credits: NASA
NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station will conduct a spacewalk on Wednesday, Dec. 21, to install a rollout solar array to increase electrical power in support of operations and scientific research. The spacewalk is scheduled to begin at 7:45 a.m. EST and last about seven hours.
The agency will provide live coverage of the spacewalk beginning at 6:30 a.m. on NASA Television, the app, and the agency’s website.
Expedition 68 Flight Engineers Frank Rubio and Josh Cassada will exit the station’s Quest airlock to install an International Space Station Roll-Out Solar Array (iROSA) to augment power generation for the 4A power channel on the station’s port truss.
Rubio will serve as extravehicular crew member 1 (EV 1) and will wear a suit with red stripes. Cassada will serve as extravehicular crew member 2 (EV 2) and will wear an unmarked suit. The spacewalk will be the third in both Cassada and Rubio’s careers.
If more time is needed to complete the iROSA installation, a second spacewalk may be conducted on Tuesday, Dec. 27.
This will be the fourth iROSA installed on station out of a total six planned for installation. Overall, the iROSAs will increase power generation capability by up to 30%, increasing the station’s total available power from 160 kilowatts to up to 215 kilowatts.
The iROSA arrived at the space station Nov. 27, following a launch aboard the agency’s 26th SpaceX Dragon commercial resupply mission Nov. 26.
Cassada and Rubio are in the midst of a science mission living and working aboard the microgravity laboratory to advance scientific knowledge and demonstrate new technologies for future human and robotic exploration missions, including NASA’s Artemis missions to the Moon.
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Learn more about the International Space Station and its crew at: https://www.nasa.gov/station
Johnson Space Center, Houston
By Gerelle Dodson
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