Space

ISS astronauts gear up for the first all-female spacewalk

ISS astronauts gear up for the...
Astronauts toiling away on the International Space Station during an earlier spacewalk
Astronauts toiling away on the International Space Station during an earlier spacewalk
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NASA astronaut Anne McClain (left) and her Expedition 58 crew members before departing Earth for the ISS
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NASA astronaut Anne McClain (left) and her Expedition 58 crew members before departing Earth for the ISS
Astronauts toiling away on the International Space Station during an earlier spacewalk
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Astronauts toiling away on the International Space Station during an earlier spacewalk
NASA astronaut Christina Koch will take part in the first all-female spacewalk later this month
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NASA astronaut Christina Koch will take part in the first all-female spacewalk later this month
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Crew aboard the International Space Station are preparing to make history later this month, with NASA astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch set to step foot outside the orbiting laboratory as part of the first ever all-female spacewalk.

More than 50 years have passed since astronaut Edward H. White II first stepped out into the emptiness of space on June 3, 1965. These days, astronauts conduct spacewalks every now and then to carry out maintenance tasks on the outside the International Space Station, and one scheduled for March 29 will be a significant outing for the scientific community.

NASA astronaut Anne McClain (left) and her Expedition 58 crew members before departing Earth for the ISS
NASA astronaut Anne McClain (left) and her Expedition 58 crew members before departing Earth for the ISS

On that day, NASA astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch are set to conduct the first all-female spacewalk over a period of around seven hours. Both were members of NASA's 2013 class of astronauts, where four of the eight members were female, and traveled to the ISS over the last year as part of expedition 58 and 59, respectively. McClain is also set to conduct a spacewalk a week earlier with fellow NASA astronaut Nick Hague.

NASA astronaut Christina Koch will take part in the first all-female spacewalk later this month
NASA astronaut Christina Koch will take part in the first all-female spacewalk later this month

"I just found out that I'll be on console providing support for the FIRST ALL FEMALE SPACEWALK with @AstroAnnimal and @Astro_Christina and I can not contain my excitement!!!!" tweeted NASA engineer Kristen Facciol, who will provide on-ground support when the astronauts venture outside.

Source: NASA, Twitter

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1 comment
Terence Hawkes
I am glad to see any space walk in which any astronaut is involved. It takes more guts than I could ever imagine to undertake one. I find it a bit sad that we feel are still at the stage where two female astonoauts making a spacewalk is considered as newsworthy.