MOSCOW, August 31. /TASS/. Russia’s Mission Control Center has issued a recommendation to cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev and Sergei Prokopyev to stop the increase of pressure at the International Space Station after the plugging of a breach at the Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft with a sealant, a spokesman for the mission said in the course of a teleconference with the cosmonauts.
"We recommend finishing the supercharge," an expert at the mission told them. Supercharge of one of the methods of building up pressure inside the station’s structural elements.
Prokopyev said several minutes later that he had finished it and the pressure inside the station was 750 millimeters of mercury. He also added that the sealant, with which they had filled the breach, had already hardened.
Earlier reports said the Mission Control Center had instructed Artemyev and Prokopyev, who had been sealing the breach, to suspend the works until Friday morning. The contents of communications between experts at the center and the expedition members aboard the ISS suggested the cosmonauts would test the sealing patch-up over the breach for durability on Friday and the final decision on the situation would be taken before the end of the day.
A well-informed source in the Russian aerospace industry told TASS earlier the breach might have appeared because of an external impact, like collision with a meteorite or space rubbish or owing to structural defects in the inner lining of the aircraft.
Expert gave the assurances, however, there were absolutely no risks for the lives of the crew aboard the station.