Feeds

NASA delays space station repair to ponder tear

What do you mean nobody brought the glue?

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

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. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Gigantic toothless 'DRAGONS' dominated Earth's early skies
Gummy pterosaurs outlived toothy competitors
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
TRIANGULAR orbits will help Rosetta to get up close with Comet 67P
Probe will be just 10km from Space Duck in October
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
'Leccy racer whacks petrols in Oz race
ELMOFO rakes in two wins in sanctioned race
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
NASA's rock'n'roll shock: ROLLING STONE FOUND ON MARS
No sign of Ziggy Stardust and his band
Why your mum was WRONG about whiffy tattooed people
They're a future source of RENEWABLE ENERGY
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.