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back to article Endeavour 'nauts in epic ISS spacewalk

Space shuttle Endeavour mission specialists Drew Feustel and Mike Fincke earlier today ventured outside the International Space Station for an epic eight hours and seven minutes - the sixth-longest spacewalk in history. Drew Feustel (top) and Mike Fincke conduct the second spacewalk of the STS-134 mission. Photo: NASA TV The …

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Let's face it. . .

these guys kick ass.

Hells Yeah!

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Coat

Missing bolts

Actually the missing bolts are for the SARJ covers. The Solar Alpha Rotary Joint is a huge pivot for the solar arrays, so they can aim at the Sun, and it needed lubing too. What's truly amazing is that Spanky managed to grab quite a few of the bolts that floated away in the bulky spacesuit mitts w/o batting them away. That's a "golden glove" award right there. These bolts were supposed to be held captive by some washers, and these failed and escaped too.

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I was wondering

I was about to make points about the use of captive bolts and tethered covers, etc, but it does seem obvious (with hindsight) that the designers would have thought of that.

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Perhaps we could get him to join the cricket team...

Sounds as if he might make a decent wicket keeper :)

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Captive bolts

It seems to me that clips or captive bolts should be used - harder to lose

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Seems to me . . .

that a magnetic mitt might have been more useful. Or maybe, a magnet on a stick.

Or are these bolts not magnetic ? Made of aluminum, maybe ? In any case, although it is a shame that we now have yet another piece of space debris whizzing around at high speed, a spacewalk is no walk in the park. And eight hours at a time is more than anyone should be subject to.

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Paris Hilton

Paris in space...

Send up Paris2 with a couple of hard drive magnets for debris collection in space...

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Anonymous Coward

tasked? tasked?

I think you've been reading to many American websites, Lewis.

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FAIL

@Lewis

Almost, first two letters match, but author is Lester

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Serious question

Won't any lost bolts' orbits eventually coincide with their original position relative to the ISS?

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Boffin

Re: Serious question

No, to do that they'd have to be in sync with the ISS which would either mean they are floating right next to it, or they are accelerated away and then decelerated back to zero relative velocity, which is not likely.

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WTF?

Why is «the sixth-longest spacewalk in history»

epic ? The longest or the shortest, perhaps - but sixth longest ?...

Henri

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Tell you what...

You try 8 hours, 7 mins in one of those suits, fighting against the air pressure of the suit every time you try to move (and yes, that includes grabbing things), without a second of a break. It's not like an 8-hour drive, where you'll likely make a couple of stops for fuel, have a coffee, sandwich, pee, whatever. Sure, these guys have drinks handy, and nappies (yum!), but it's still hard work and a constant effort.

An epic undertaking - doesn't matter if it's the longest or not.

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dropping bolts

I've always wondered if some kind of net would help when this kind of thing occured.

Of if some common sense could prevail and anything designed to be worked on on weightlessness was either snap-open or had tethers on the retainers.

It was a good save considering how bulky the suits are, but he shouldn't have had to do it in the first place (or had the opportunity to drop them).

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@Alan Brown

They did have tethers. For some reaons, they didn't work.

A net as a backup would seem like a nice idea, but you'd need something to secure the net to the cover. Given weight considerations, I doubt it's made of steel, so magnets are out. That means you'd need some kind of glue, and I don't know that anyone's tested blue-tak in space, nor how the residue left behind would react with the various structural elements it could be attached to, in an environment that combines extreme heat, extreme cold and significant amounts of radiation.

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In my experience...

...3 bolts should do just fine.

But yeah, what a job, wouldn't want it, to be honest.

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