NASA: Astronaut rides robotic arm in successful spacewalk
Robotics help move equipment out of shuttle payload bay and onto space station
Riding a robotic arm 210 miles above the Earth, NASA astronauts successfully completed their first spacewalk of the 11-day mission that launched earlier this week.
Astronauts Mike Foreman and Robert L. Satcher, Jr. spent six hours and 37 minutes outside the space shuttle Atlantis, which is docked with the International Space Station. They installed a spare S-band antenna structural assembly to the station's truss, or backbone, while also replacing a handrail, troubleshooting cable connections and lubricating one of the station's robotic arms.
Arguably the most dramatic part of the day's spacewalk was when Satcher rode the space station's robotic arm from the shuttle's payload bay to the station's truss -- all while orbiting the Earth at 17,500 miles an hour. Satcher connected his feet to the arm and carried the antenna assembly between the two crafts.
The two astronauts completed their planned tasks about two hours ahead of schedule, which allowed them to take on a job that wasn't slated until the second spacewalk. With the extra time today, Satcher and Foreman attached a system designed to hold payloads to the station's truss.
This mission was designed to move more than 27,000 pounds of equipment and spare parts to the space station before the space shuttle fleet -- NASA's heavy lifters -- are retired.
The equipment being delivered during this mission is considered critical to the operation of the space station, according to NASA. At this point, there are only six flights left for the space shuttle fleet before it's scheduled to be retired.
The equipment that needs to go up is being delivered in order of highest priority. Since this is the first mission to deliver what scientists hope will turn into a trove of spare parts, they're taking up the most important pieces.
The parts being delivered include two pump modules, two gyroscopes, two nitrogen tank assemblies, an ammonia tank assembly and a high-pressure gas tank. Parts going up for the robotic systems onboard the station include a latching end effector for the station's robotic arm and a trailing umbilical system reel assembly for the railroad cart that allows the arm to move along the station's truss system.
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
If you use ‘password,’ one the worst passwords, as your password, fail to keep antivirus protection updated and don’t bother to deploy security patches to close critical vulnerabilities, then maybe you should consider working for the cybersecurity-clueless federal government; you’d fit right in, according to Senator Tom Coburn's cybersecurity and critical infrastructure report.
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Changing the Way Government Works: Four Technology Trends that Drive Down Costs and Increase Productivity
- This paper discusses four technology-based approaches to improving processes and increasing
productivity while driving down department and agency costs.
- Is Your Big Data Solution Production-Ready?
- Read "Is Your Big Data Solution Production-Ready?" now, and discover best practices and actionable steps to implementing a production-ready big data solution.
- Pay-as-you-Grow Data Protection: IBM Tivoli's Full-featured Data Protection Suite for Small to Medium Businesses
- IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery gives small and medium businesses the opportunity to start out with only the individual solutions...
- Streamline Data Protection with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center
- IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) has been an industry-standard data protection solution for two decades. But, where most competitors focus exclusively on Backup...
- Simplify and Consolidate Data Protection for Better Business Results
- Learn about IBM® Tivoli® Storage Manager Operations Center, which provides advanced visualization, built-in analytics and integrated workflow automation features that leapfrog traditional backup... All Government IT White Papers
- Webinar: Building a Big Data solution that's production-ready Big data solutions are no longer just a nice-to-have.
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- The New Way to Work Knowledge Vault This Knowledge Vault focuses on how, in today's increasingly virtual world, it's more important than ever to engage deeply with employees, suppliers, partners,...
- Getting Ready for BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10.2 Find out how BlackBerry® Enterprise Service 10 helps organizations address the full spectrum of EMM challenges, while balancing the needs of both the...
- Containerization Options: How to Choose the Best DLP Solution for Your Organization This webcast outlines a framework for making the right choice when it comes to containerization approaches, along with the pros and cons of...
- All Government IT Webcasts