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International Space Station Has Ammonia Leak

FILE - The International Space Station.
FILE - The International Space Station.
VOA News
The U.S. space agency NASA says an ammonia leak has been detected at the International Space Station, but the crew members aboard are not in danger.

Space station crew members reported the leak on Thursday, saying they saw small white flakes floating away from the structure. NASA says crew members used handheld cameras and external television cameras to pinpoint the source of the flakes.

NASA says the rate of ammonia escaping has increased since it was first reported, but adds that the station is functioning normally.

Ammonia is used to cool the station's power channels that provide electricity to the station's systems. NASA says it is working to reroute other power channels to maintain full operation of those and other systems normally controlled by the leaking solar array loop. NASA says the leaking array could be shut down.

The station previously had such a leak last year, but it is not clear whether this leak is from the same source.

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