HOUSTON — In a tough and hazardous emergency procedure, a brave spacewalking astronaut repaired a torn solar energy board on the International Space Station (ISS). This permitted the space station crew to expand the wing’s entire length. Astronaut Scott Parazynski fixed homemade braces over the broken wing. He cut off the jumbled wirings that had torn it in two areas when it was unfurled. He then observed as the station crew positioned the wing to its 115-foot length.

The ugly rip involved a guide wire, two grommets, and two hinge wirings. Parazynski first cut a hinge wiring near the bigger tear, with a special instrument to be certain that the solar panel would not bounce back and strike him. The solar pane utilises sunlight to produce electricity. Consequently, it was active with an electricity of over 100 volts, possibly as huge as 160 volts.

"It's a bit of a reach here", Parazynski stated as he straightened to clip the guide wiring. When Parazynski clip the guide wiring, the 90-foot length of the wing recoiled completely to reach a spool where fellow astronaut, Douglas Wheelock, was manipulating and supervising the wing. To everybody’s relief, the wing retracted easily. "Beautiful. Nicely done", said Parazynski.

Without this emergency procedure, the wing posed a structural danger for the space station. The harm could have been more severe, probably pushing NASA to release it and waste an essential power supply for future laboratories. It was Scott Parazynski’ fourth spacewalk, and is the seventh spacewalk of his fifteen-year career as an astronaut.

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