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[i]On July 23, Expedition 15 crewmember Clayton Anderson will journey outside of the space station to throw two large hunks of unneeded equipment towards Earth, officials said during a press conference today at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
"This is the first time we've ever done a jettison quite like this on the space station," said Bob Dempsey, NASA's lead flight director for Expedition 15, adding that smaller jettisons have been performed on past ISS and Hubble Space Telescope missions.
During the upcoming spacewalk, Anderson will jettison a 1,400-pound (635-kilograms) refrigerator-sized container of ammonia, or Early Ammonia Servicer (EAS), away from the station at a gentle pace of one mile per hour (1.6 kph). He'll also toss a 212-pound (96-kilogram) stanchion used to attach a camera to the space laboratory toward the Earth.[/i]
[i]NASA says it has little choice but to jettison two pieces of junk hardware — including a 1,400-pound container filled with ammonia coolant — from the international space station early next week.
Some fragments will likely survive a fiery re-entry through the atmosphere and strike the ground, the space agency said Wednesday. The six- to seven-hour spacewalk by NASA's Clay Anderson and Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin, in which the container and a 218-pound brace for a communications antenna will be discarded, is scheduled to start at 5:30 a.m. CDT Monday.
The ammonia container will probably circle Earth for at least 300 days before it plummets through the atmosphere. The container is massive enough that some fragments will likely hit the ground or the ocean rather than burn up. The brace should disintegrate.[/i]
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