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Space Station Crew Safe After Oxygen Supply System Failure

The International Space Station

The Worldwide Area Station
Picture: NASA

Crew members aboard the Worldwide Area Station are coping with a failed oxygen provide generator situated inside a Russian module. Fortunately, the astronauts and cosmonauts are not in peril, however that is now the second current glitch involving a Russian element, which could be trigger for concern.

The malfunctioning oxygen provide system is situated throughout the Russian Zvezda module and conked out late yesterday, reports AFP. Sounds scary, however a second oxygen provide system situated on the U.S. facet is functioning usually and offering breathable air for the ISS crew. Furthermore, further oxygen provides are saved on the ISS as an added precaution.

The system failed on the identical day that NASA astronaut Kate Rubins and cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov arrived on the orbiting outpost, becoming a member of crewmembers Chris Cassidy, Anatoly Ivanishin, and Ivan Vagner. It’s not clear if the oxygen failure had something to do with their arrival, although that appears unlikely.

It’s additionally not clear if the Russian oxygen era system failure has something to do with an unresolved air leak. Newest phrase is that Roscosmos has lastly traced the supply of the leak, which is someplace within the Zvezda module, and mission engineers are at present getting ready directions for repairs, as AFP reviews. The air leak has been energetic since final yr and isn’t deemed a threat to the crew.

Concerning the failed oxygen era system, a Roscosmos spokesperson instructed AFP that “nothing” at present threatens the crew, and repairs to the system ought to occur later in the present day.

State-owned Russian information company RIA Novosti is reporting that the failed system is an Electron-VM OGS. RIA Novosti quoted veteran Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka, who said: “All modules of the Russian phase are exhausted,” noting that they depend on expired tools in want of substitute.

The U.S. facet is provided with an oxygen era system able to supporting the present crew of six. It’s a part of an built-in community, referred to as the Environmental Management and Life Help System (ECLSS), which additionally consists of water restoration and air revitalization. The system “produces oxygen for respiratory air, in addition to replaces oxygen misplaced on account of experiment use, airlock depressurization, module leakage, and carbon dioxide venting,” in keeping with a NASA fact sheet. Oxygen is generated by utilizing electrolysis to separate oxygen from hydrogen. NASA’s ECLSS has been working on the ISS since 2008.

This can be a creating story, and we’ll replace this publish as we study extra.

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George Dvorsky