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ISS crew members to take spacewalk Monday, launch Russo-Peruvian nanosatellite

August 18, 2014, 6:23 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The process of launching the satellite by hand had been thoroughly tried out on the ground
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© EPA/NASA

MOSCOW, August 18, /ITAR-TASS/. Oleg Artemyev and Aleksandr Skvortsov, flight engineers of the International Space Station (ISS) crew, will take a spacewalk on Monday and launch a Russo-Peruvian nanosatellite, the Chasqui-1, an official at the Flight Control Center (FCC) outside Moscow told Itar-Tass.

The FCC official specified, "According to preliminary data, the opening of an egress hatch is scheduled for 17:59, Moscow time, and closing is slated for 00:15 on August 19. The calculated duration of the spacewalk is six hours and 16 minutes".

This time the ISS crew members' extravehicular activities will be of scientific directedness, the FCC official said. Artemyev and Skvortsov will assemble scientific instrumentation of equipment for the Expose-R experiment, take a swab from a porthole under the Test experiment, remove panels of the Endurance experiment and the third container of Biorisk one, and photograph the shield vacuum insulation on the surface of the orbital station. The cosmonauts will carry out a number of other technical operations as well.

Artemyev is to launch the Russo-Peruvian nanosatellite Chasqui-1. The cosmonaut told a pre-flight news conference that the process of launching the satellite by hand had been thoroughly tried out on the ground. "The operation is simple enough: when we egress into the open space, Aleksandr will hand the satellite over to me and I shall let it float," Artemyev related.

"Chasqui" means " messenger" in the language of Peruvian Indians. The spacecraft, developed by the students of the (Russian) city of Kursk and Peru over a period of three years, is 10 by 10 cm in dimension and weighs one kilogramme. Various information has been threaded into the satellite's memory. It includes children's drawings which, as a message to extraterrestrial civilisations, will be broadcast into the open space.

The launch of the satellite will be tracked from the ground. A special antenna will be receiving telemetric data fed into the memory of the Chasqui-1. The satellite will be monitored daily in four sessions a day for six months.

The rest of the ISS crew Russian cosmonaut Maksim Surayev, NASA astronauts Steve Swanson, Gregory Wiseman, and European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst will be ensuring the safety of their crew mates from board the station.

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