Feeds

NASA delays space station repair to ponder tear

What do you mean nobody brought the glue?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

NASA is delaying a risky spacewalk to repair a torn solar wing panel on the International Space Station.

The delay will give Mission Control at Johnson Space Center until Saturday to refine instructions for the unprecedented operation. Discovery crew members will also use the time to improvise repair devices from inside the space station laboratory.

The spacewalk was originally planned for Friday to repair a solar panel that ripped as it was being unfurled earlier this week. The torn solar wing can still provide power, but it poses a structural problem while it remains partially deployed.

NASA has also planned a spacewalk to check a malfunctioning joint today, but the solar wing damage has taken mission priority.

Ripped solar array, courtesy NASA

ISS's ripped solar array, image courtesy NASA

The International Space Station's robotic arm will grab the shuttle Discovery's boom extension to ferry veteran spacewalker Scott Parazynski out to the damaged area.

Parazynski will try to untangle a snagged guide wire and stitch the panel with home-made repair devices. NASA said the task may pose additional danger, because significant electric power courses through the arrays. Astronaut Doug Wheelock will accompany Parazynski on the spacewalk.

If the repair is unsuccessful, astronauts will have one more go before Discovery's scheduled undocking on Monday. Should the second attempt fail, the array may be jettisoned from the station.

Discovery's mission was extended an extra day early this week — and may face more delay to deal with the task at hand. The shuttle is currently scheduled to depart on November 5 and touch down in the US on November 7. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
That glass of water you just drank? It was OLDER than the SUN
One MEELLION years older. Some of it anyway
GRAV WAVE DRAMA: 'Big Bang echo' may have been grit on the scanner – boffins
Exit Planet Dust on faster-than-light expansion of universe
SpaceX Dragon cargo truck flies 3D printer to ISS: Clawdown in 3, 2...
Craft berths at space station with supplies, experiments, toys
Big dinosaur wowed females with its ENORMOUS HOOTER
That's right, Doris, I've got biggest snout in the prehistoric world
Japanese volcano eruption reportedly leaves 31 people presumed dead
Hopes fade of finding survivors on Mount Ontake
Relive the death of Earth over and over again in Extinction Game
Apocalypse now, and tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.