NASA has postponed another spacewalk due to debris from a Russian rocket
NASA was once again forced to stop preparations for going into outer space, due to the possibility of a collision with space debris. And again, these are fragments of a Russian rocket.
Fragments of the third stage (“acceleration block” in the terminology of Roscosmos) Fregat-SB had to pass only a few hundred meters from the ISS, so a decision was made to perform an evasive maneuver, during which exit outside the station is prohibited. Most likely, we are talking about the Fregat-SB, which remained in orbit (these stages cannot leave orbit on their own) after the launch of the Spektr-R satellite in 2011. In 2020, it collapsed into many pieces, forming a cloud of debris. The engines of the cargo ship Progress 81 will be used in the evasion maneuver. The crew of the station is currently safe.
NASA will postpone the planned spacewalk to another day. The purpose of this off-station activity is to install a new array of solar panels to increase the ISS’s energy capabilities.
Regarding Soyuz MS-22, then the hole in cooling system found. The Russians insist that this is the result of a micrometeorite impact, although in fact, it could also be a factory defect. Meanwhile, the temperature on board Soyuz MS-22, isolated from the station, rose to +50 degrees Celsius. Roscosmos must decide whether or not to use such an emergency craft for landing by the end of December. The options remained the same – using the emergency Soyuz MS-22, launching the Soyuz MS-23 without a crew, or asking SpaceX for help. It is impossible to repair a damaged cooling system in orbit.