NORFOLK, Va. – NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough and French astronaut Thomas Pesquet will perform a spacewalk Friday morning outside the International Space Station.
During Friday’s spacewalk, NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson will stay inside the ISS and control the robotic arm that will help her crewmates.
The spacewalk is the first of three coming up that will prepare the ISS for a second International Docking Adapter, which will allow more commercial spacecraft to dock with the station in the future. Right now, only Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft can dock to bring people onto the ISS. Commercial spacecraft, like SpaceX’s Dragon and Orbital ATK’s Cygnus must be grabbed by the robotic arm and berthed so cargo can be offloaded.
The second spacewalk is scheduled to take place March 30 with Kimbrough and Whitson.
The third spacewalk is scheduled for April 6, with Whitson and Pesquet and robotic help from Kimbrough. It will be the International Space Station’s 200th spacewalk.