Cosmonauts install a futuristic new arm to the International Space Station

The new arm installed on the International Space Station will help astronauts  when carrying out work outside the station.

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Two Russian cosmonauts spent just over six hours in low Earth orbit to install a huge robotic arm on the International Space Station , which is designed to work autonomously, move around outside the station and pick up or transport astronauts. during spacewalks .

Oleg Artemyev and Denis Matveev of Roscosmos departed the ISS at 11:01 am ET. Monday and concluded their spacewalk at 5:37 p.m., according to NASA . While outside the space station, the cosmonaut couple installed and connected an electronic panel for the robotic arm that will work next to the Russian hatch.

The arm was developed by a European consortium led by Airbus Defense and Space in the Netherlands for the European Space Agency, is more than 11 meters long and was launched in July 2021. 

Space mechanical arms

This mechanical arm has a special mechanism useful for handling loads as they arrive and transferring them directly from outside the ISS to the inside without the need for astronauts to walk. It can even be used to transport spacewalkers . 

Currently, astronauts use safety straps to attach and move through the ISS while on walks, but the new mechanical arm is designed to pick them up and transport them to different locations outside the space station .

The cosmonauts will finish installing the arm during another scheduled walk on April 28. NASA indicates that it will take a couple of more walks to complete the equipment of the “manipulator system” .