Radio amateurs on the International Space Station (ISS) crew will conduct two extra-vehicular activities — EVAs, or spacewalks — in January to upgrade the orbiting outpost’s electrical power system. Expedition 50 Commander Shane Kimbrough, KE5HOD, and Flight Engineer Peggy Whitson, KC5ZTD, of NASA will perform the first spacewalk on January 6, with the work continuing a week later with Kimbrough and Flight Engineer Thomas Pesquet, KG5FYG, of ESA.
During the spacewalks, the astronauts will perform a complex upgrade to the ISS power system. Crew members will install adapter plates and hook up six new lithium-ion batteries delivered to the station in December. Prior to each spacewalk, the new batteries will be robotically extracted from a pallet to replace 12 older nickel-hydrogen batteries.