NASA: Trouble With Space Station Cooling System Is No Emergency | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

NASA: Trouble With Space Station Cooling System Is No Emergency

One of two cooling systems aboard the International Space Station is experiencing problems, but there's no imminent danger to the crew of six, NPR's Joe Palca reports.

NASA spokesman Kelly Humphries says a faulty external pump briefly stopped working on the orbital outpost and that as a precaution, the three Russians, two Americans and one Japanese crewmember aboard have shut down some minor operating systems to reduce the power load.

Humphries said the situation is not an emergency for the moment.

Palca says the cooling system is needed to dissipate heat from the station's many onboard systems.

"This has happened in the past, and without both cooling systems operating, the crew has to curtail normal operations aboard the station," Palca says. "But also in the past, with the help of engineers on the ground, the crew has been able to fix the problem."

That was in 2010, and astronauts had to do three spacewalks to set things straight.

Humphries says that those engineers are trying to figure out if the problem is a hardware or software issue.

Space.com has a diagram of the dual cooling systems here.

Update at 8:35 p.m. ET. NASA Says Pump Valve Unexpectedly Shut Down:

The Associated Press quotes NASA spokesman Bob Jacobs as saying "a valve on a pump on one of the station's two external cooling loops shut down because it was too cool."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

WAMU 88.5

Art Beat With Lauren Landau, Sept. 18

You can attend an annual Latin American film festival or see a new play about strength, war and family.

NPR

From Coffee To Chicory To Beer, 'Bitter' Flavor Can Be Addictive

If you don't think you like bitter foods, try them again. Jennifer McLagan, the author of Bitter: A Taste Of The World's Most Dangerous Flavor, is on a mission to change hearts and minds.
WAMU 88.5

Most Of D.C. Region's Lawmakers Back Plan To Arm Syrian Rebels

The House has passed a bill that authorizes the arming of moderate rebel groups in Syria — it's a vote that most, though not all, local lawmakers supported.

NPR

3.7 Million Comments Later, Here's Where Net Neutrality Stands

A proposal about how to maintain unfettered access to Internet content drew a bigger public response than any single issue in the Federal Communication Commission's history. What's next?

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.