back to article Emergency spacewalk as ISS takes a leak

The crew of the International Space Station (ISS) is preparing for an emergency spacewalk as early as tomorrow to fix an ammonia leak from the cooling system. Commander Chris Hadfield reported seeing small white flakes floating away from the P6 truss structure of the ISS last night. Mission Control confirmed that the ammonia …


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  1. Huntsman

    Clooney to the rescue?

    The timing of this leak occurring and the release of the trailer for Gravity is quite coincidental.

  2. mmeier

    The fix for this and all other ISS problems is a simple three step solution

    1) Evacuate crew

    2) Deorbit station

    3) Stop the "manned spaceflight" nonsense

    1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      I can not adequately express my sorrow that we share a common genetic heritage.

      1. AdamT

        well, the common part of the genetic heritage might be quite a long way back: "Bah, humbug, who needs warm blood? Cold blood was good enough for me and your mother. These little furry things running around won't last. Although there do seem to be a few more of them than yesterday ..."

      2. mmeier

        What benefit did Manned spaceflight bring? Unmanned has uses but man in can is a waste of money and payload

        1. SW

          Let me guess, you're probably of a similar opinion about man's exploration in the other direction, I believe they also use the 'man in a can' method to research the oceans.


          1. mmeier

            Within certain limits yes. Underwater has problems with signal speed, either the vehicle is using a cable or is restricted to the limites of a static program so a human can be a benefit. But even here most jobs can be done better by remotes and most jobs ARE done by remotes. They do not need life support and if they are lost it's money not lifes.

            The big differences between under water and space are:

            Under water bases can do useful things from population base to mining to more secure oil drilling with current day tech. Space tech can not do that neither existing nor projected realistic tech

            Underwater technology can transport and house the necessary amount of workers

            UW Tech can be used. Quite a bit of the possible space tech can not be used for political reasons (Nuclear technology)

            So if the EU or whoever wants to finance some underwater habitats for deep sea mining/drilling/fish farming AND those jobs need humans for some tasks - sure

            But all useful things in space, including pure science, can be done as well or better with robots.

    2. SecurityPedant

      4) Stop using all forms of computing devices

      5) Devolve the human race

      6) Start worshipping the sun and sacrifice every first born child

      Any other amazingly dumb suggestions?

    3. Daniel B.

      mmeier strikes again

      Then again, it's the same Windows 8 lover, MS shill and Linux basher (basically, the evil version of Eadon) so it's probably just plain ole trolling.

      1. sisk

        Re: mmeier strikes again

        basically, the evil version of Eadon

        There's a scary thought. Eadon's equally zealotous evil twin. We have the makings of a geeky superhero origin story there....

        Ok, sorry, I can't keep a straight face. I just had a mental image of Eadon in a penguin shaped Iron Man style suit built from open source hardware diagrams and powered by Debian Wheezy. Yes, it's been that long a week.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: mmeier strikes again

          For me, the mental image of Eadon is Don Qixote tilting at windmills, with his weary penguin side-kick Sanchez sadly shaking its head.

      2. Arthur 1

        Re: mmeier strikes again

        Are we really sure mmeier and Eadon are different people?

        Seems logical for one troll to set up two opposite accounts so he can get his tired lunacy in on every article without having to discriminate.

      3. mmeier

        Re: mmeier strikes again

        So there are no benefits of manned spaceflight. Thanks for the proof

        1. Uffish

          Re: "Thanks for the proof"

          Nobody tried to prove anything! Really mmeir, people here expect, and deserve, better trolling than that. Up your game, put a bit of thought into your posts.

          Example: You can't really argue with the first man in space - it was a colossally successful troll. Similarly the first men on the moon were colossally successful responses. Do you deny the (at the very least political) real world importance of these events?

          1. mmeier

            Re: "Thanks for the proof"

            As a german Propaganda events have a bad taste for me. And that's all it was. OTOH given that the US program was run by a former SS Major that once requested "better material than the last batch that died to fast " to build his rocket factory so propaganda value may have been high on his agenda. And the UdSSR was even worse in that being quite willing to have people die so they get their propaganda.

            From a commercial and scientific point of view the missions where useless. The gathering of probes could have been (and have been) done by robots. They send exactly ONE scientist up and that flight almost got cancelled (Apollo 17)

            1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

              Re: "Thanks for the proof"

              mmeier is one of those bloody idiots I wish there was a way to block. I don't think s/he has ever said anything I agree with, and that puts her/him below Eadon, Jake, Titus Technophobe, Ian Michael Gumby, and Matt Bryant.

              1. mmeier

                Re: "Thanks for the proof"

                Linux Fanatics, Canned Man Freaks - They all get pissy and personal if you critizise their toys. To a point where it is actually FUN to poke at their toys...

          2. Tom 13


            If it weren't for the space program, he wouldn't be able to criticize it on El Reg. The local pub perhaps, but not El Reg.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yes, they should all come home and sit in front of the TV.

      Possibly, they could bitch about the state of the world while they were doing nothing useful.

      And occasionally post stupid, miserable, short sighted, knee jerk comments on news sites. Go back to youtube.

  3. Robert Helpmann??

    MacGyver It

    How many other jobs are there where you might be called on to fix the AC, run a physics experiment, and pilot a high tech craft in one day? The article does make me wonder, though if simply applying chewing gum might not do the trick. Of course, there's the problem of getting it out of the helmet...

    1. Moosey

      Re: MacGyver It

      DuctTape = Answer to all problems :)

  4. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. brooxta

    Coincidence? I think not.

    Also in the news today is the story about the planned ISS switch over to Linux from MS based solutions. (Loved the quote from the contractors about needing a "stable and reliable" computing platform :-)

    So, is Steve Balmer now reduced to taking potshots at the ISS with a superpowered pea shooter in order to save face?

  6. 100113.1537

    Life imitating art?

    I can't be the only one to think this is just a rip-off of the Big Bang Theory?

    "Houston, this is not a request - we are basically out the door"

  7. tuxtester

    Steve Balmer, little finger on corner of mouth ...

    He he he ...

  8. Martin Budden

    Only one system?

    I get the impression from this article (and others from different sources) that this is the only cooling system for the station's power channels. Surely that can't be right? Surely hundreds of brainy rocket scientists would have had the idea of having at least two cooling systems in case one leaks/fails???

    1. Tom 13

      Re: Only one system?

      Check this article:

      If the pump weighs in at 260 pounds, that points at a significant engineering reason for only 1 system: too much mass to have parallel systems.

      1. Martin Budden

        Re: Only one system?

        And yet they swapped it with a spare they happened to have on board.

  9. Stephen Gray

    @ mmeier

    The following: scratch-resistant lenses, CAT & MRI tech, cordless power tools, super glue, memory foam, freeze dryed food, cochlear implants, I could go on but I really can't be arsed.

    Please come back when you've reached puberty.

    1. mmeier

      Re: @ mmeier

      Off the stuff on that list two (lenses, memory foam) where based on NASA developed stuff. But NASA is not the same as developed for or due to manned space flight. Actually both make more sense for unmanned operations

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