HOUSTON, Feb. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Two Russian cosmonauts will step outside the International Space Station on Wednesday, Feb. 16. They will install and retrieve experiments on the Russian segment of the complex and deploy a small ham radio satellite. NASA Television coverage of the spacewalk will begin at 6:45 a.m. CST.
Expedition 26 Flight Engineers Dmitry Kondratyev and Oleg Skripochka, wearing their Russian Orlan spacesuits, will emerge from the Pirs Docking Compartment airlock for the second time in four weeks at about 7:15 a.m.
During the nearly six-hour spacewalk, they will install two experiments. One will collect information useful in seismic forecasts and earthquake predictions, and the second will look at gamma splashes and optical radiation during terrestrial lightning and thunderstorms. The spacewalkers also will retrieve a pair of panels exposed to space as part of an experiment to identify the best materials for building long-duration spacecraft.
The cosmonauts also will deploy an experiment called ARISSat-1, or Radioskaf-V, a boxy 57-pound nanosatellite that houses congratulatory messages commemorating the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's launch to become the first human in space. The ham radio transmitter will enable communications with amateur radio operators around the world for three to six months. It is the first of a series of educational satellites being developed in a partnership with the Radio Amateur Satellite Corp.; the NASA Office of Education International Space Station National Lab Project; the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station working group; and RSC-Energia.
The spacewalk will be the second for Kondratyev, who will wear the spacesuit marked with red stripes, and the third for Skripochka, who will wear the suit with blue stripes.
For more information about the International Space Station and its crew members, visit:
For NASA TV downlink, schedule and streaming video information, visit:
For more information about ham radio on the space station, visit: