A short circuit in a vital cooling system pump on theInternational Space Station has set the stage for two emergencyspacewalks to replace the faulty component.
Learn more about thespace station's cooling system and the challenging pump repair in theSPACE.com graphic below. NOTE: This graphic does not portray all parts of the space station but rather focuses on those aspects related to the cooling system malfunction:
Each pump module weighs 780 pounds (353 kg) andis 5 1/2 feet long (69 inches) by 4 feet wide (50 inches). They are also about3 feet tall (36 inches), making them very bulky and difficult to move.
Two pumps are used at any given time to runthe space station's two U.S.cooling system loops: Loop A and Loop B. The failed pump is part of theLoop A system. The space station also has an independent Russian cooling systemthat can support the station on its own for a brief time, if required, stationmanagers have said.
There are four spare pumps on the space station.
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<a href="/8873-graphic-nasa-space-station-cooling-system-malfunction-explained.html"><img src="http://www.space.com/images/iss-cooling-pump-100802-02.jpg" alt="Fixing the International Space Station's Cooling System Failure" width="400" border="1"/></a><br /> Source Space.com: All about our solar system, outer space and exploration
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