STS-117 Mission Specialists Jim Reilly and John “Danny” Olivas kicked off the mission’s first spacewalk at 4:02 p.m. EDT. The duo is performing tasks necessary to activate the Starboard 3 and 4 (S3/S4) segment, which was attached to the station earlier today.
The spacewalkers' work includes making power, data and cooling connections between the station and the S3/S4, which contains a new set of solar arrays. The spacewalkers are also scheduled to release locks and launch restraints on the segment’s solar arrays and prepare its radiator and rotary joint for operation.
STS-117 Pilot Lee Archambault and Expedition 15 Flight Engineer Oleg Kotov are at the controls of the station’s robotic arm for the excursion. STS-117 Mission Specialist Patrick Forrester is coordinating the spacewalk.
The orbital stroll is scheduled to last 6.5 hours.
The truss was attached to the station at 2:28 p.m. using the station’s robotic arm. The S3/S4’s solar arrays will increase the station’s power generation capabilities.
The start of the spacewalk and the attachment of the truss were delayed due to the saturation of the control moment gyros that control the attitude of the station. Flight controllers performed standard procedures to bring the CMGs back to normal operations.
Explore further: NASA's reliance on outsourcing launches causes a dilemma for the space agency