NASA astronauts conclude spacewalk to replace batteries

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WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- NASA astronauts Chris Cassidy and Robert Behnken concluded their spacewalk Friday after over six hours.

The two astronauts completed all the work planned for the first of four spacewalks to replace batteries that provide power for the International Space Station's solar arrays on the starboard truss of the complex, according to NASA.

The new batteries provide an improved and more efficient power capacity for operations.

The spacewalkers removed five of six aging nickel-hydrogen batteries for one of two power channels for the starboard 6 truss, installed two of three new lithium-ion batteries, and installed two of three associated adapter plates that are used to complete the power circuit to the new batteries, said NASA.

Their second spacewalk is scheduled for next Wednesday, during which they will install one more lithium-ion battery and one more adapter plate and remove the sixth nickel-hydrogen battery that will no longer be used, said NASA.

Friday's spacewalk was the seventh for both astronauts. Space station crew members have conducted 228 spacewalks in support of assembly and maintenance of the orbiting laboratory, according to NASA. Enditem

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