U.S. astronauts Mark Vande Hei and Scott Tingle in the International Space Station completed the first spacewalk this year at 14:13 American Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, American space agency NASA said.
The two astronauts lasted 7 hours and 24 minutes and replaced a Latching End Effector (LEE) on the station's robotic arm, Canadarm2. There are two redundant end effectors on each end of the arm used to grapple visiting vehicles and components during a variety of operational activities, NASA said.
The spacewalk was the 206th in support of space station assembly and maintenance, the third in Vande Hei's career and the first for Tingle.
Vande Hei will venture outside the station again on January 29 with engineer Norishige Kanai of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency to stow a spare latching end effector removed from the robotic arm last October on to the station's mobile base system rail car for future use.
NASA said spacewalkers have now spent a total of 53 days 13 hours, and 49 minutes working outside the station in support of assembly and maintenance of the orbiting laboratory.