Pleased with the trouble-free flight of the United State's space shuttle Challenger, sister to Columbia, officials of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), gave the go-ahead on April 7 for the first US spacewalk in nine years.
1. SV INTERIOR Challenger space shuttle and crewmen 0.38
2. GV EXTERIOR Space shuttle (3 shots) 0.54
3. SV PULL BACK TO GV Astronauts on space walk around cargo bay (6 shots) 1.59
4. GV Astronaut on cargo bay, with view of earth in background 2.13
5. GV Astronauts work on exterior of shuttle (7 shots) 3.23
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Background: IN SPACE
Pleased with the trouble-free flight of the United State's space shuttle Challenger, sister to Columbia, officials of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), gave the go-ahead on April 7 for the first US spacewalk in nine years. The other main aim of the mission was the launching of the three-billion-dollar communications satellite, which was accomplished with some difficulty, the preceding day. Wearing spacesuits costing two million dollars, astronaut Story Musgrave floated out into space first, followed soon after by Donald Peterson. They spent a total of just under four hours outside the Challenger's cabin, where fellow crewman Commander Paul Weitz and co-pilot Karol Bobko remained. During their time outside the shuttle, to which they were anchored by ropes, Peterson and Musgrave conducted a series of checks on the flexibility of their new suits, and tested specially designed hardtools, pulleys, and winches. They also successfully closed the outer doors of the Challenger's cargo bay, which usually remained open while in space; and they took readings for ground control of space pressure and battery readings. While they floated in space, one of the astronauts waved cheekily at the camera. Before they left the cabin, President Reagan spoke to the crewmen from ground control and wished them luck. NASA scientists were reported to be very pleased with the success of the walk, especially in view of the fact that it was seen as a major rehearsal for a spacewalk repair operation, planned for April next year. Challenger was scheduled to touch down the following day on California's Mojave desert.
Source: NATIONAL BROADCASTING COMPANY INCOROPRATED