During the 6 hour and 33 minute spacewalk, Parazynski and Tani teamed to disconnect cables from the Port 6 (P6) truss, allowing it to be removed from the Z1 truss. Once completed, Mission Specialists Stephanie Wilson and Doug Wheelock used the station’s robotic arm to move the P6 and park it overnight. The space walk began at 4:32 a.m. CDT and ended at 11:05 a.m. CDT.
Tani also visually inspected the station’s starboard Solar Alpha Rotary Joint and gathered samples of “shavings” he found under the joint’s Multi-Layer Insulation covers. The task was added so engineers could gather additional information on possible causes of increased friction detected for the past month and a half as the joint rotated for solar array positioning.
Mission managers today decided to limit the use of the rotary joint as they continue to assess the anomaly. Managers also determined Discovery’s Thermal Protection System is cleared for reentry.
In addition to detaching the P6 truss, the spacewalkers outfitted the Harmony module, mated the power and data grapple fixture and reconfigured connectors on the starboard 1 (S1) truss that will allow the radiator on S1 to be deployed from the ground later.
Tomorrow, Wilson, Wheelock and Mission Specialist Clay Anderson will handoff the P6 element to the shuttle robotic arm, operated by Mission Specialists George Zamka and Commander Pam Melroy. The station’s arm will then be move down along the truss railway closer to the P6 outboard installation point and the P6 will be handed back to Canadarm2 for installation in its new location on P5 during the mission’s third spacewalk.