WATCH LIVE: Russian Cosmonauts Go on a Spacewalk to Inspect That Controversial Hole in the ISS

Tuesday, 11 December 2018 - 10:56AM
Space
NASA
Tuesday, 11 December 2018 - 10:56AM
WATCH LIVE: Russian Cosmonauts Go on a Spacewalk to Inspect That Controversial Hole in the ISS
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Screenshot/YouTube NASA
In the wake of the discovery of a tiny hole in the International Space station, Russian cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Sergei Prokopyev have been cleared to inspect the hull of the craft in a spacewalk. The NASA live stream of the space walk began at 11 AM EST today (Dec. 11th), but you can watch it happening now below!



Back in September, we reported on the discovery of the hole, which was determined not to be a factory defect:

"Last week there were reports that astronauts aboard the International Space Station found a leak that was traced to the Soyuz capsule on the Russian side of the station. The hole was 1.5 millimeters wide and determined to not be a threat to those on board because it could easily be patched. The thinking at the time was that a small meteorite must have struck the capsule and created the fracture, but now Russian officials are suggesting that someone drilled the hole, maybe as an act of sabotage."

Despite insinuating that NASA was behind the sabotage, the Russian administration admitted that the 'sabotage' might have been the work of a cosmonaut:

"Russian MP Maxim Surayev and former ISS cosmonaut offered that one of the current inhabitants may have done it in an attempt to cut his/her stay short and return home. "If a cosmonaut pulled this strange stunt—and that can't ruled out—it's really bad," he said. "I wish to God that this is a production defect, although that's very sad, too—there's been nothing like this in the history of Soyuz ships."

One of the major clues regarding the hole is the appearance of drill marks on the ISS. According to Gizmodo:

"...on closer inspection, it appeared that the hole was caused by 'a faltering hand,' said Roscosmos CEO Dmitry Rogozin several days after the incident, adding that it 'was done by a human hand-there are traces of a drill sliding along the surface.' The Roscosmos chief said the defect may have occurred on Earth during the manufacturing process, but he didn't rule out other possibilities, such as an ISS astronaut causing /deliberate spoilage.'"

We'll be watching the spacewalk with bated breath to find out more details.
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