“Cufflinks” key to repairing ripped solar arrays panel
The STS-120 and Expedition 16 crews have completed the configuration of the suits and tools that will be used during Saturday’s spacewalk. In addition, they have completed the robotic arm tasks that were part of the spacewalk preparations. The space station robotic arm grappled and handed off the shuttle’s arm extension, the Orbiter Boom Sensor System, or OBSS, to the shuttle robotic arm for overnight parking. The OBSS will provide support for Mission Specialist Scott Parazynski on the spacewalk, the fourth of the mission.
Parazynski and Mission Specialist Doug Wheelock will conduct the excursion, which is slated to kick off at 6:28 a.m. EDT Saturday. Parazynski will repair a torn solar array while suspended from the boom attached to the space station’s robotic arm, and Wheelock will assist from the station’s truss. Mission Specialist Stephanie Wilson and Expedition 16 Flight Engineer Dan Tani will be operating the station’s robotic arm from the robotic work station inside the Destiny laboratory. Mission Specialist Paolo Nespoli will be the spacewalk coordinator.
Text and Image credits: NASA