NASA’s Expedition 66 crew has arrived at the International Space Station for Wednesday’s first spacewalk in 2022. Meanwhile, the rest of the crew prepares for the departure of SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft on Friday. Russian cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov (pictured above) and Pyotr dubrov (pictured below), will conduct a spacewalk Wednesday at 5:30 PM IST. NASA confirmed the news by tweeting that “Russian Cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov & Pyotr dubrov will conduct an outside spacewalk.
On the 31 of May, the scientists at the Russian space agency Roscosmos announced that for the first time in history, Russian cosmonauts will step out into space without an international companion. The announcement was made by Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin after a group of construction workers at Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome completed an upgrade to the country’s Soyuz spacecraft.
The crew aboard the international space station has just finished maintenance work outside of the Russian sector. The astronauts will now be stepping out to perform the first spacewalk in 2022. They are expected to complete work to extend a 34-meter power cable connection to two experiments, including one located at the exterior of the Russian segment. The experiment is designed to study how living cells react when exposed to space conditions for an extended period of time.
Russian cosmonauts Shkaplerov & Dubrov have successfully completed numerous spacewalks and will now be stepping out to install Nauka & Prichal modules on the station in order to welcome Russian spacecraft into the future. According to the NASA report, the Russian cosmonauts will complete the tasks within seven hours.
Russian cosmonaut Anatoly Solovyev is the only one to have spent more than 82 hours in space. However, during his 16 spacewalks, two additional Russians will be stepping onto the ISS today. NASA confirmed that spacewalks will be continued in the spring, with additional spacewalks to equip a European robotic arm at Nauka and activate Nauka’s airlock for future spacewalk activity.
NASA shared an update about the SpaceX Cargo Dragon spacecraft, which is due to undock Friday. Engineers Raja Chari and Mark Vande Hei were also mentioned in the report as starting the loading work. Astronaut Thomas Marshburn joined them to organize their cargo spacecraft. Many valuable scientific experiments in microgravity will be returned to the cargo ship.