#Spacewalk ends early for British Astronaut Tim Peak

As the first astronaut from the European Space Agency (representing Britain), Tim Peak’s spacewalk had to end early due to a leak in his helmet. From the Guardian:

Britain’s first European Space Agency astronaut began his maiden spacewalk shortly before 1pm on Friday as the orbiting station soared 250 miles above Australia. By the time he returned inside, he had circled the planet at least three times and witnessed six stunning sunsets or sunrises.

Emerging from the Quest airlock into the darkness of Earth’s shadow, Peake joined Nasa’s Tim Kopra for more than four hours of challenging work. Under the direction of ground staff in Houston, the astronauts overcame snagged tethers, a brief carbon dioxide scare, and a torn glove before the day was done.

But there was one glitch the astronauts could not solve on the fly. A water leak into Kopra’s helmet forced Nasa controllers to abort the spacewalk two hours early. The men were ordered inside, having completed their main task, but leaving others undone. The incident echoed a more serious situation in July 2013 when European astronaut Luca Parmitano had a sudden rush of water leak into his helmet.

Luckily, the astronauts made it safely back to the ISS, and Astronaut Tim Peake is in good spirits:

The moment was hardly lost on him. As Tim Peake clambered out of theInternational Space Station he nodded to the union flag emblazoned on his shoulder. To wear the patch was, he said, “a huge privilege, and a proud moment”.

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A shot of Tim Peake outside the International Space Station with the Earth in the background, taken from Tim Kopra’s helmet camera. Photograph: NASA

 

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