Astronauts Hope Christmas Eve Spacewalk Will Wrap Up Repair

HOUSTON (CBSDC) — Astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins are hoping they get what they want this Christmas: a repaired cooling line.

They ventured out for a second spacewalk to repair a faulty system on the International Space Station.

Mission Control says that, if all goes as planned, they will finish installing a new ammonia pump 260 miles above the planet.

WATCH: Live Video of Spacewalk

The pump powers one of the two external systems that regulate heat inside the station. The six-man crew had to turn off all nonessential equipment, including experiments.

NASA had thought three spacewalks might be needed. But the astronauts made so much progress on Saturday, a third may not be necessary.

The repair work will fix the line that malfunctioned on Dec. 11.

Two of the three Russians crew members will conduct a Moscow-directed spacewalk on Friday to install cameras and fresh experiments. That was planned long before the U.S. cooling system ran into trouble.


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