Cosmonauts Rest Before Spacewalk, Astronauts Work Eye-Brain Study

Cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin are pictured conducting a six-hour and 25-minute spacewalk in their Orlan spacesuits on Nov. 17, 2022.
Cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin are pictured conducting a six-hour and 25-minute spacewalk in their Orlan spacesuits on Nov. 17, 2022.

The Expedition 69 cosmonauts are sleeping in today resting up for a logistics spacewalk set to begin tonight. Meanwhile, the rest of the International Space Station crew continued cleaning biology research hardware, conducted an eye and brain study, and serviced a pair of spacesuits.

Commander Sergey Prokopyev and Flight Engineer Dmitri Petelin have completed their spacewalk preparations and are getting a good night’s sleep before beginning a spacewalk at 9:30 p.m. EDT today. The pair from Roscosmos will exit the Poisk module‘s airlock in their Orlan spacesuits and spend about six hours and 40 minutes moving a radiator from the Rassvet module to the Nauka science module.

Fellow cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev will assist the spacewalkers from inside the station operating the European robotic arm and maneuvering the radiator from Rassvet to Nauka. NASA TV begins its live spacewalk coverage at 9 p.m. Tuesday on the agency’s app and website.

While all three cosmonauts rested, the orbital outpost’s four astronauts were busy with science and spacesuit work on Tuesday. The foursome split its time throughout the day maintaining science hardware, studying how microgravity affects their eyes and brain, and cleaning spacesuits.

NASA Flight Engineers Frank Rubio and Stephen Bowen worked together Tuesday cleaning up the Cell Biology Experiment Facility (CBEF) located in the Kibo laboratory module. The CBEF housed biological samples that were returned to Earth inside the SpaceX Dragon cargo craft several hours after it undocked from the station at 11:05 a.m.  Saturday. Those samples and more will be analyzed by scientists on Earth to continue learning how living in weightlessness affects the human body.

Rubio later checked out the KERMIT fluorescence microscope that supports biology, physics, and materials research. Bowen joined NASA Flight Engineer Woody Hoburg at the end of the day for eye exams that are part of the ISAFE study that measures eye, brain, and blood vessel changes in space.

Hoburg began his day checking cooling loops and collecting water samples from inside an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU), or spacesuit. UAE (United Arab Emirates) Flight Engineer Sultan Alneyadi continued the EMU maintenance as he recharged and filled water tanks in the suits. The spacesuit work is being done in advance of a spacewalk planned for Friday, April 28, to continue upgrading the station’s power generation capability.

Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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