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US Astronauts Complete Successful Spacewalk to Fix Station

  • VOA News

Astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins (not shown) work to repair an external cooling line on the International Space Station, 260 miles above Earth, Dec. 24, 2013.
Two American astronauts have successfully repaired a crippled cooling system during a rare Christmas Eve spacewalk.

It was the second spacewalk in less than a week for astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins, and only the second Christmas Eve spacewalk ever performed.

NASA ordered the spacewalks to revive a critical cooling loop at the International Space Station and install a new pump.

All non-essential equipment had to be turned off when the line died on December 11, and many experiments were halted.

NASA said the seven-hour spacewalk was a success, and the cooling system should be restored and all equipment back up and running soon.

Two Russian cosmonauts are scheduled for a spacewalk Friday to install new cameras.