Oleg Artemyev had been on a six-hour spacewalk for nearly three hours when the voltage on his spacesuit’s battery began to drop, prompting Moscow flight controllers to order the cosmonaut to immediately return to the space station’s airlock.
“Oleg, leave everything and go back,” warned the flight controller Artemyev from the control room in Moscow, as heard in a live broadcast of sound from space to Earth. “Leave everything and start straight back…Go back and join the station force.”
Artemyev returned to the airlock and attached his suit to the power of the space station.
Russian flight controllers decided to prematurely end a spacewalk after Denis Matveev, another astronaut doing a spacewalk, reset the robotic arm they were upgrading.
NASA spokesman Rob Navias said Artemyev “was not in any danger at all.”
The space station, a research laboratory the size of a football field in low Earth orbit, has hosted international astronaut crews for more than two decades, with Russia, the United States, Japan, Canada and the European Space Agency among the major users of the spacecraft, the laboratory is counting.
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