Astronauts take 2nd spacewalk to hook up plumbing

Astronauts take 2nd spacewalk to hook up plumbing

Astronauts take 2nd spacewalk to hook up plumbing

This image taken from video and made available by NASA shows astronauts Robert Behnken and Nicholas Patrick during their spacewalk as they work outside the International Space Station on Saturday. AP

Robert Behnken and Nicholas Patrick had to route extra-long hoses that were fashioned right before space shuttle Endeavour's trip to the space station. The original ammonia coolant lines failed tests, and so engineers had to put together replacement hoses from shorter spares that were welded together.

The hoses are 14 feet (4.3 meters) to 18 feet (5.5 meters) long and, along with a protective blanket, cumbersome to work with.

"It certainly is longer than I remember it being," Patrick said as he got started.
It was the second excursion in three days for Behnken and Patrick. They have one more spacewalk to finish installing the Tranquillity room and its attached observation deck, the last major building blocks of the 11-year-old space station. Endeavour carried up the pieces last week.

Once ammonia coolant is flowing through the hoses, Tranquillity will begin surging with power. Its systems cannot be turned on unless there is a way to get rid of the heat generated by the equipment inside.

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