MOSCOW, June 19. /TASS/. The crewmembers of the first expedition to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2021 will practice preparations for a spacewalk in a weightless environment facility at Russia’s Cosmonaut Training Center, Roscosmos announced on Friday.
"The cosmonauts are set to hold preparations for the tasks of making a spacewalk under the program of the ISS-65 long-term expedition at the weightless environment facility of the Cosmonaut Training Center in July 2020," Roscosmos said in a statement.
A source in the space industry earlier told TASS that the launch of a Soyuz MS-17 manned spacecraft with the crew of the ISS expedition 64 was planned for October 14 this year. The ISS expedition 65 will be the first in 2021.
Deputy Department Head of Russia’s Cosmonaut Training Center Alexei Altunin was quoted as saying in Roscosmos’s statement that the weightless environment lab has already tested the operation of the spacesuit air supply system, pressure chambers, communications, telemetry and lighting systems, and also the working capacity of Orlan spacesuits and diving equipment.
Nauka module tests
The tests of the weightless environment facility are running with the fulfilment of the real program of making a spacewalk, using an experimental installation (a mock-up) of Russia’s new Nauka (Science) laboratory module for the ISS.
Roscosmos cosmonaut Andrei Borisenko and Cosmonaut Training Center tester Anatoly Panin took part in the trials.
"They practiced the cycle scheme of making a spacewalk, sequentially performing all the operations with the equipment, which cosmonauts use during their extra-ship activity: cables, handrails, the cargo boom and special tools," the statement says.