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Station Spacewalk to Install New Cameras, Jettison FPP


It will be on with the new and off with the old during the first 
station-based spacewalk in U.S. suits in more than two years.

Members of the 12th station crew, Commander and NASA Science Officer 
Bill McArthur and Flight Engineer Valery Tokarev, are scheduled to 
install a new camera assembly during the Nov. 7 spacewalk, beginning 
about 9:30 a.m. EST. They also will remove and jettison the Floating 
Potential Probe.

McArthur is designated EV1 (for Extravehicular Activity) and will wear 
the spacesuit with red stripes. Tokarev, EV2, will be in the all-white suit.

The camera assembly installation on the Port 1 Truss is the first of the 
two primary tasks. The new device is similar to the camera assembly on 
the Starboard 1 Truss, and will be installed on a P1 lower outboard 
stanchion. It will have a big role in future station assembly.

The camera assembly will be used after arrival of the P3 and P4 truss 
segment during STS-115, station assembly flight 12A, next year. It will 
offer visual perspective to arm operator Steve MacLean, a Canadian 
astronaut, as he maneuvers the truss segment for installation.

The truss segment brings with it another radiator and another set of 
solar wings. Stretching 240 feet from tip to tip, the solar assembly 
will almost double the total

McArthur and Tokarev are scheduled to spend about three of the 
spacewalk's planned 5½-hours on the camera assembly installation. They 
then move, with McArthur in the lead, up the P6 truss to the Floating 
Potential Probe.

The FPP is situated atop the P6 Truss between the station's solar wings. 
It was designed to measure the station's electrical potential and 
compare it to the surrounding plasma. It isn't working.

Photos show FPP fasteners have backed out. That has raised concerns that 
the fasteners could become detached and perhaps cause damage.

McArthur and Tokarev will release and stow a grounding wire, then 
release the FPP housing from its stanchion. They will check its 
condition and then report lighting conditions to Houston with an eye to 
jettisoning the FPP.

Getting rid of the FPP is a little more complicated than just tossing it 
away. To ensure its safe departure, McArthur is to jettison the device 
backwards in relation to the direction the station is moving with a 
smooth motion. He will aim for a velocity of at least half a foot per 
second. He'll try to throw the FPP 30 degrees upward and 10 degrees to 
the left of the back of the station.

The spacewalkers are scheduled to spend about 1½ hours on the FPP. If 
they have time they may do one or more additional tasks at the end of 
the outing, the first U.S. Quest airlock-based spacewalk from the 
station since an Expedition 6 spacewalk by Commander Ken Bowersox and 
NASA Science Officer Don Pettit on April 8, 2003.

One is retrieval of a rotary joint motor controller that has failed. The 
station uses a number of those controllers, with more coming. Engineers 
are anxious to get this one back to see what went wrong.

Another is removal and replacement of a remote power controller module, 
a kind of circuit breaker. This one is on the mobile transporter, which 
moves along railroad-like tracks on the station's main truss.

The spacewalk is scheduled to end about 3 p.m. EST.

For accompanying photos see: 
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