New ISS Docking Adapter Installed After EVA

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ISS Astronauts Complete EVA Successfully and Install the New ISS Docking Adapter. 

Early yesterday morning (depending on where you are on Earth) astronauts Nick Hague and Drew Morgan did something even crazier than jumping out of an airplane. They jumped out of a spaceship! Well, okay. Technically, they floated out of a space station. And yeah, it’s been done 218 times on the ISS since 1998. So what? It’s still probably gutsier than anything you and I will ever do. And why, you ask, did these two brave souls don their suits and step out into the void? For science, that’s why. They installed a new ISS docking adapter designed to accommodate a wide variety of both private and international spacecraft. 

This new ISS docking adapter is the second to be installed, and it will allow the space station to interact with spacecraft from SpaceX, Boeing, and other international agencies. As Hague and Morgan floated outside, they routed some three-year-old power cables to the new IDA (International Docking Adapter). Once connected to power, ISS astronaut, Christina Koch operated controls inside that closed internal hooks and completed the installation. By the way, don’t tell the others, but Koch is my favorite ISS astronaut at the moment. She takes such lovely photos.

SpaceX Dragon capsule docks with the ISS

SpaceX Dragon capsule docks with the ISS

The IDA launched last month aboard a SpaceX Dragon capsule and Falcon 9 rocket and arrived at the ISS safely. Last week, astronauts used the station’s robotic arms to place the adapter into position above the Harmony upper port. Then yesterday, Hague and Morgan did the crazy bits.

How Frightening Are EVAs?

In a word, very. Of course, NASA and ISS protocols are in place to keep all astronauts as safe as possible during the experience. However, that doesn’t mean things can’t go wrong. It’s space, after all. Any one of a million tiny pieces of space debris could hit your suit with the force of a bullet. That’d suck pretty bad, but that’s not the worst case. The worst case is when an explosion or some other such cosmic bad luck propels you violently hurtling away from the spacecraft. You’d just keep going and going and going. Forever. So kudos to Hague and Morgan, and anyone brave enough to strap themselves to a freaking rocket and leave our planet. You people are my heroes.

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Brandon Humphreys

Brandon Humphreys

I'm a wizard. I write stuff and it goes from my head into yours - Magic! Apart from that, I am the Senior Editor for Space Porn, a veteran, a rock guitarist, and a teacher.

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