After spending nearly seven hours in space, Nasa astronauts were successful in repairing the robotic arm of the International Space Station.
While performing the first of the three spacewalks scheduled for the month of October, Expedition 53 commander Randy Bresnik and flight engineer Mark Vande Hei worked on the station's 17 meter-long robotic arm, Canadarm2, and replaced its worn out Latching End Effector (LEE) with a new one.
Canadarm2 routinely uses its LEE, or hands, to move supplies, equipment, and even astronauts. The robotic arm is deployed for space station's maintenance and upkeep. It is also responsible for capturing and docking of spacecraft that scientific payload as well as supplies for the 6-person crew aboard ISS.
However, after nearly 16 years of operation, the arm has started to experience wear and tear, with one of its two original LEEs needing a replacement. According to Nasa, the latches on the LEE stalled during one of the arm's robotic manoeuvres, calling for the priority replacement.
That said, the astronauts performed the daring task of replacing 'the hand' of Canadarm2. The men also took care of a couple of additional tasks and removed multi-layer insulation from a spare direct current switching unit and prepared a flex hose rotary coupler for future use.
Commander Bresnik and Vande Hei will lead next spacewalk as well. On October 10, the duo will lubricate the newly replaced Canadarm2 end effector and replace cameras on the left side of the station's truss and the right side of the station's U.S. Destiny laboratory.
Flight Engineer Joe Acaba will join Bresnik for the third and final spacewalk of the month on 18 October 2017.
Here's the video of the full spacewalk: