NASA astronaut Sunita Williams and her Japanese colleague Akihiko Hoshide were finally able to install a power unit on the International Space Station Wednesday during their second spacewalk. They used tools made out of a toothbrush.The astronauts fulfilled their main task to complete the installation of a new Main Bus Switching Unit (MBSU) on the station's truss, which had caused problems during an Aug 30 spacewalk, reported RIA Novosti.
Using a toothbrush to fix a space station
Williams and Hoshide used tools made out of a toothbrush and some spare parts to conduct the repair. They also installed a camera on the station's robotic arm, Canadarm2, during the spacewalk that lasted 6 hours and 28 minutes, according to NASA. Last time NASA Flight Engineer Williams and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Flight Engineer Hoshide spent 8 hours and 17 minutes in space, but failed to install a new MBSU on the station's S0 truss as they had difficulties driving a bolt to secure the equipment.
The MBSU is a heavy component that is used to relay power from the station's solar arrays to its systems.Williams and Hoshide's previous spacewalk was the third longest in history. The longest spacewalk, of 8 hours and 56 minutes, was carried out by US astronauts Susan Helms and James Voss in 2001.
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