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Astronaut Who Made History With Spacewalk Dies at 80

Bruce McCandless 'encouraged all of us to reach new heights'

(Newser) - NASA astronaut Bruce McCandless, the first person to fly freely and untethered in space, has died, the AP reports. He was 80. McCandless was famously photographed in 1984 flying with a hefty spacewalker's jetpack, alone in the cosmic blackness above a blue Earth. He traveled more than 300 feet... More »

Space Station Shield Lost During Spacewalk

US astronauts 'MacGyvered' a solution

(Newser) - In space, nobody can hear you scream, "Oh no, there goes the shielding"—apart from Mission Control. American astronauts Peggy Whitson and Shane Kimbrough suffered a frustrating setback during a spacewalk Thursday when one of the four fabric shields they were installing on the exterior of the International... More »

Computer Glitch May Force Spacewalk

It's a backup, and the crew is not in danger

(Newser) - It's never fun when your computer goes down, but it's especially bad if you happen to be about 200 miles above Earth at the time. A computer outage at the International Space Station may require a spacewalk by astronauts and threatens to delay next week's launch of... More »

Astronauts Make Rare Christmas Eve Spacewalk

Astronauts swap in new cooling pump

(Newser) - A pair of astronauts installed a new ammonia pump on the International Space Station during a spacewalk today, in just the second Christmas Eve spacewalk in NASA's history, the AP reports. "It's like Christmas morning opening up a little present here," astronaut Rick Mastracchio said as... More »

Astronauts Begin Space Station Repairs

First of multiple spacewalks needed is underway

(Newser) - Two US astronauts are in the midst of the first of two and perhaps three spacewalks needed to repair the cooling system of the International Space Station, reports AP . Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins will work on the faulty pump today, Monday, and again on Christmas Day if necessary. You... More »

Xmas Spacewalk Planned for Space Station Fix

Cooling system in urgent need of repair

(Newser) - Before they can tuck into their freeze-dried turkey dinners, two American astronauts are going to have to venture out on a spacewalk to fix a faulty pump that has shut down part of the International Space Station's cooling system. The Christmas Day spacewalk is one of three that NASA... More »

Olympic Torch Returns From Space

Crew parachutes into Kazakhstan

(Newser) - A Russian space capsule carrying the Sochi Olympic torch and three astronauts returned to Earth today from the International Space Station in a flawless landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan. The Soyuz capsule landed at 8:49 local time, about three and a half hours after undocking from the station... More »

Close Call: Helmet Leak Endangers Astronaut

Spacewalk aborted as Italian astronaut runs into trouble

(Newser) - In one of the most harrowing spacewalks in years, an astronaut had to rush back into the International Space Station today after a mysterious water leak inside his helmet robbed him of the ability to speak or hear and could have caused him to choke. Italian Luca Parmitano seemed fine... More »

Stinging Eye Almost Derails Spacewalk

Astronaut Andrew Feustel has an eye irritation ... 220 miles up

(Newser) - Eyelash, space dust, tears … who knows what was, but an astronaut today got something in his eye that stung "like crazy"—and almost interrupted a spacewalk. Several minutes later, Andrew Feustel assured everyone his eye was feeling better and the third spacewalk of the Endeavour continued as... More »

'Bummer:' Astronauts Hit Trouble on Spacewalk

Mike Fincke loses bolt on spacewalk to repair solar wings

(Newser) - Astronaut Mike Fincke ran into trouble today while trying to lubricate a joint in the life-sustaining solar power system of the International Space Station, losing one bolt and getting a washer stuck in a crevice. Fincke, one of NASA's most experienced spacemen, had to settle for a partial lube... More »

Spacesuit Glitch Ends Endeavour Spacewalk

Two astronauts end spacewalk early when a spacesuit malfunctions

(Newser) - NASA managers cut short today's routine spacewalk by two Endeavour astronauts because one of their carbon dioxide sensors stopped working. The astronauts were nearly five hours into a planned six-and-a-half hour spacewalk at the International Space Station when mission controllers noticed that Gregory Chamitoff's spacesuit sensor wasn't... More »

Space Station Cooling System Malfunctions

Spacewalks may be necessary to perform repairs

(Newser) - Half of the International Space Station's cooling system has suddenly shut down, forcing the astronauts on board to power down equipment and face the likelihood of urgent spacewalking repairs. After huddling today, NASA managers gave preliminary approval for a pair of spacewalks, the first of which would take place later... More »

Astronauts 'Moved to Tears' by New Views

In addition to a pretty sight, 'Cupola' will aid in shuttle docking

(Newser) - The shutters are open on the International Space Station’s new observation deck, which one astronaut describes as a “bay window to the world,” and the views are stunning. The centerpiece of the “Cupola,” as it’s called, is a 31-inch diameter circular aperture that is... More »

Atlantis Crew Finishes Mission

Astronauts complete final spacewalk

(Newser) - Astronauts from the space shuttle Atlantis finished the final spacewalk of their mission at the International Space Station today, clearing the way for their return Wednesday. Astronauts Robert Satcher and Randy Bresnik installed a science experiment that will test how materials, including a new kind of Teflon, hold up to... More »

Approaching Debris Doesn't Stop Spacewalk

Space junk may come within 2 miles of station, shuttle

(Newser) - Two astronauts stepped out on a spacewalk to install a new tank of space-station coolant today as a large piece of orbiting junk headed their way. The old rocket part was expected to pass early tomorrow within 2 miles of the shuttle-station complex, considered a safe distance by NASA specialists.... More »

NASA Briefly Lost Touch With Spacewalking Astronauts

(Newser) - Astronauts walking outside the International Space Station lost communications with NASA ground control for 33 minutes today, Reuters reports, after a storm cut the link through a relay station on the Pacific island of Guam. “This is no safety of flight issue,” said a spokesman, who added that... More »

Fifth Spacewalk Completes Shuttle Crew's To-Do List

Endeavour crew successfully completes maintenance and upgrades of space station

(Newser) - Astronauts from the space shuttle Endeavour today completed the final tasks of their mission to upgrade and maintain the International Space Station’s Kibo lab, reports. Crewmen Chris Cassidy and Tom Marshburn spent five hours in space rewiring the station’s altitude control system and adding some TV... More »

Spacewalk Cut Short After Suit Malfunctions

(Newser) - Two astronauts had to abruptly end their spacewalk outside the International Space Station when mission control operators realized one of them had a spacesuit glitch, reports. Astronaut Chris Cassidy, making his first spacewalk, was told to abandon his battery replacement work on the station because carbon dioxide levels... More »

Astronauts Spacewalk on Apollo Anniversary

(Newser) - Two Endeavour astronauts enjoyed a successful spacewalk on the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing yesterday, reports The astronauts, who attached three large spare parts to the International Space Station, were outside at 4:17pm—the exact time Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin touched down on... More »

Astronauts Take Final Hubble Spacewalk

The final mission to repair the telescope will finish Tuesday

(Newser) - Spacewalking astronauts ventured out today to finish repairs on the Hubble Space Telescope, never to be touched by human hands again. It was the fifth and final spacewalk for the crew of the shuttle Atlantis, and the final planned visit by astronauts, ever, to Hubble. The astronauts outfitted Hubble with... More »

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