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Astronauts Go to Work Outside Space Station


*Astronauts Go to Work Outside Space Station*
3 November 2007

Astronauts are working outside the International Space Station to repair 
a torn solar array. Mission Specialists Scott Parazynski and Doug 
Wheelock began the spacewalk, the missionís fourth, at 6:03 a.m. EDT.

The spacewalk will see Parazynski riding the stationís robotic arm up to 
the damaged area of the array. He will be secured in a foot restraint on 
the end of the Orbiter Boom Sensor System, or OBSS Ė the extension to 
the shuttle robot arm used for inspection of the orbiterís thermal 
protection system.

Though this will be the first operational use of the OBSS to reach a 
worksite, the task was demonstrated during a spacewalk on the STS-121 
mission in July 2006 to prove the boom could provide a stable 
environment for this type of work.

As Parazynski installs homemade stabilizers and releases the snag 
suspected of causing the tear in the array panel, Wheelock will assist 
from the base of the solar array. The distance from the stationís center 
is about 165 feet out on the truss and approximately 90 feet up to the 
damaged site.

If all goes as planned, the crew inside will then deploy the array half 
a bay at a time while Parazynski watches for any new complications. The 
spacewalk is scheduled to wrap up about 1 p.m.

+ View images from Nov. 2 Mission Status Briefing 

*Mission Information*
+ STS-120 Mission Overview 
+ Harmony Node 2 
+ Space Shuttle Discovery 

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