A piece of space junk Russia brushed past the International Space Station during the early hours of Wednesday, so he had to maneuver to avoid the debris.
NASA indicated in its Blog that “as flight control teams prepared for the American trek, updated tracking data from a fragment of debris from the upper stage of the Russian Fregat-SB showed a close approximation to the station”.
In relation to said information, the flight control teams ordered the crew to stop the preparations for the walk while the ground crew outlined the steps to perform the Predetermined Debris Avoidance Maneuver (PDAM).
During the maneuver, the thrusters of the Roscosmos Progress 81 fired for 10 minutes and 21 seconds, taking into account that without the course change, the POT estimated that the debris could have passed 402 meters.
The firing of the propellant did not endanger the crew of astronautsIn addition, the decision to carry out the maneuver postponed the planned spacewalk of Frank Rubio and Josh Cassada (NASA astronauts).
NASA managers will evaluate the next planned spacewalk to install a new array of deployable solar arrays with the goal of increase the energy capacities of the International Space Station.