On their upcoming spacewalk, Krikalev and Phillips will change out a Russian biological experiment, retrieve some radiation sensors, remove a Japanese materials science experiment, photograph a Russian materials experiment, install a television camera and relocate a grapple fixture. The six-hour spacewalk begins at 1:55 p.m. CDT Thursday. Live coverage on NASA TV will begin at 12:30 p.m. CDT.
At 12:44 a.m. CDT Tuesday, Krikalev's time spent in space will surpass that of any other human being. Krikalev's record will pass the one now held by Cosomonaut Sergei Avdeyev, who spent 748 days in orbit. Krikalev is a veteran of six space flights, two long-duration flights to the Soviet Union Space Station Mir; two flights on the Space Shuttle; and, counting this mission, two flights to the International Space Station. Krikalev was aboard the Space Station Mir when the Soviet Union disintegrated. He became the first Russian to fly on the Space Shuttle in 1994. He was a member of the Shuttle crew that began assembly of the International Space Station in 1998. In 2000, he was a member of the first resident International Space Station crew.
Krikalev and Phillips had an off duty day on Sunday. On Monday they worked to unpack and prepare spacewalk tools and to ready the Pirs docking compartment, from which the spacewalk will be conducted. They continued spacewalk preparations for the rest of the week, checking the Russian Orlan spacesuits they will wear and talking with spacewalk experts in the Russian Mission Control Center and in Houston.
On Thursday, the Russian Vozdukh carbon dioxide removal system shut down aboard the Station. The system is one of multiple systems that can be used to scrub the Station cabin air. Flight controllers in Houston have activated a U.S. Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly to perform that function while the Vozdukh is not operating. Russian specialists are continuing to analyze the problem.