Crew Reconfigures Station for Post-Spacewalk Activities

Cosmonauts Sergei Volkov, station commander, and Oleg Kononenko, flight engineer, performed two spacewalks in less than a week. They outfitted Russian station components and inspected their docked Soyuz vehicle. The spacewalkers also retrieved a Soyuz separation bolt for analysis on the ground.

The Soyuz vehicle was readied as a lifeboat in case the Pirs docking compartment failed to repressurize after completing the spacewalks. Flight Engineer Greg Chamitoff occupied the Soyuz during the spacewalks. The Soyuz has now been reconfigured to its normal state.

A docked Progress cargo craft will be deactivated and will repressurize the station’s atmosphere. The Progress was prepared for an undocking during the spacewalks in the unlikely event Volkov and Kononenko were forced to enter their Soyuz, undock and redock at another port.

The cosmonauts spoke with the Russian lead spacewalk officer on the ground about their activities. They are also completing recharging the Orlan spacesuit batteries.

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