Samantha Cristoforetti, first European astronaut to perform a spacewalk | Science

Samantha Cristoforetti She becomes the first European woman to perform a spacewalk while performing work outside the International Space Station (ISS). Around 4:00 p.m., Spanish peninsula time, the path begins in which she will be accompanied by cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev and which can last up to seven hours. During the live broadcast, they will be able to differentiate themselves as Cristoforetti will wear a spacesuit with blue stripes, while Artemyev’s will be decked out in red stripes. These astronauts will work together on various tasks, such as installing platforms and workstation hardware mounted on the Nauka laboratory module, funded by Roscosmos, the Russian space agency.

The Italian pilot’s walk is a milestone for the European Space Agency (ESA), but it’s a far cry from the American feat that NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir set in 2019 go on a spacewalk together. ESA is very concerned about the lack of diversity in its workforce, as Cristoforetti is the agency’s only female astronaut. Right now, is choosing new astronautswhich will end at the end of the year, and one of the objectives is to recruit women who travel to the moon.

The Italian astronaut and the Russian cosmonaut will deploy ten nanosatellites within hours with the aim of collecting electronic radio data along the way. In addition, they will place a telescopic arm of Zaryaa module which was the first component launched for the International Space Station, at Poisk, another module released in 2009. In this way, they intend to help future spacewalks.

a robotic arm

This is the third walk in which preparation-related tasks are included. of the European robotic arm for the first operations in Neuka. Cristoforetti and Artemyev will be responsible for relocating its external control panel, working on insulation, and installing a temporary adaptation point for the robotic arm. This arm brings new ways to operate automated machinery to the orbital complex. In this way, it will be able to carry out several tasks automatically or semi-automatically, it can be directed from inside or outside the ISS and it can be controlled directly or in a programmed way. Cristoforetti will be responsible for ensuring that the arm’s camera unit window protection is clear enough to allow a laser light to guide the arm so it can be picked up and moved.

Samantha Cristoforetti was born in Milan in 1977. In 2001 she joined the Italian Air Force and eight years later was selected as an astronaut at the European Space Agency (ESA). In 2014 it was launched from a cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, as part of its first mission, dubbed Futura. In all, she spent 200 days in space as a flight engineer. At that time, he asserted that he did not like “imposition” in gender issues: “men are always individuals; women, an indefinite mass. When I read sentences like “we women”, I always wonder why this woman gives herself the right to speak in my name”. But he admitted the importance of having role models: ‘After all, when I was young I was also more interested in astronaut stories’

During this first mission, he conducted experiments in the Station’s laboratories. The experience of being selected, trained and then flying for her first space mission was recounted in her book Diary of an apprentice astronaut, the proceeds of which are donated to UNICEF. After several projects, at the end of April 2022, he returns to the Space Station for his second mission, called Minerva. In this program, Cristoforetti is the leader of the USOS, responsible for all activities within the American orbital segment, for the duration of the mission. The astronaut is active on social networks, from where she publishes Pictures and videos where he shows part of his experience and explains curious aspects, how photos are taken in space, how do you train oh correctup to even answer questions from your followers.

Spacewalking is also known as extravehicular activity or EVA. In 1965, Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, died in 2019makes the first spacewalk. Since then, many astronauts have succeeded him. Women too. In 2019, when the NASA pair performed their joint spacewalk, it became a milestone in astronaut equality. Christina Koch was the fourteenth woman to go on a spacewalk, and this was her fourth walk, while Jessica Meir made her debut outside the International Space Station (ISS), being the fifteenth woman to do so. TO DO.

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