Source: Xinhua

03-23-2009 10:45

Special Report:   Tech Max

WASHINGTON, March 21 (Xinhua) -- Astronauts who conducted spacewalk on Saturday accidentally inserted a pin upside down and jammed an equipment storage platform at the International Space Station, a NASA official said.

International Space Station flight engineer Yury Lonchakov (L) is seen with members of the Space Shuttle Discovery crew during hatch opening ceremonies aboard the station in this image from NASA TV March 17, 2009. The Discovery astronauts are (L-R) Joseph Acaba, Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Pilot Tony Antonelli, Steve Swanson, Richard Arnold, John Phillips and Shuttle Commander Lee Archambault. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
International Space Station flight engineer Yury Lonchakov (L) is seen
with members of the Space Shuttle Discovery crew during hatch opening
ceremonies aboard the station in this image from NASA TV March 17, 2009.
The Discovery astronauts are (L-R) Joseph Acaba, Koichi Wakata of the
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Pilot Tony Antonelli, Steve Swanson,
Richard Arnold, John Phillips and Shuttle Commander Lee Archambault.
(Xinhua/Reuters Photo)


Astronaut Joseph Acaba installed the clamp like pin upside down -- "180 degrees out from where it should have been," said Glenda Laws-Brown, official in charge of spacewalk in NASA's Mission Control.

According to Laws-Brown, NASA has assembled a team of experts to determine whether there's any way the crew can pry or hammer the pin loose during a spacewalk Monday -- the third and final of shuttle Discovery's mission.

Astronauts Steven Swanson and Joseph Acaba finished the second of three planned spacewalks Saturday to make preparation for NASA's future space shuttle mission and the debut flight of a Japanese cargo ship.

The NASA TV shows that they exited the space station at around 0:51 p.m. EDT (1651 GMT) to start the outing, which lasted about six and half hours. It's Swanson's fourth spacewalk of in his career and Acaba's first.

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