HOUSTON – Its work with the space shuttle complete, the orbiter boom sensor system has a new home on the International Space Station’s main truss and a new name, the second of the day. The move was completed during the fourth and final spacewalk of Endeavour’s STS-134 mission. Mission Specialists Mike Fincke and Greg Chamitoff took the boom from the station’s Canadarm2 and secured it on the S1 truss segment at 12:42 a.m. CDT. Endeavour Pilot Greg Johnson and station Flight Engineer Ron Garan at the arm’s controls in the Cupola took the 50-foot boom from the station arm.
They moved the boom to the S1 truss and handed it off to the two spacewalkers. Fincke and Chamitoff secured it in attachment fixtures, making it officially a part of the station called the ISS boom assembly.
The spacewalkers subsequently retrieved a power and data grapple fixture from the left end of the truss assembly and brought it back to the boom. They removed an electrical flight grapple fixture, which the shuttle arm had used, and replaced it with the fixture they had brought back. That fixture enables Canadarm2 to attach to the boom’s end, to use it as an extension should the need arise. With the grapple fixture replacement, the boom became the enhanced ISS boom assembly, a name that should stick for a while.
The last major task was working with Dextre, the special purpose dexterous manipulator, part of the Canadian robotics suite that includes the shuttle and station arms. At the express logistics carrier 3 on the truss, they removed launch restraints from a spare arm for the robot-like device brought up by Endeavour.
That completed, Fincke and Chamitoff began the standard cleanup tasks, then moved back into the Quest airlock. Repressurization began at 6:39 a.m., marking the end of the 7-hour, 24-minute spacewalk.
Andrew Feustel, who participated in the first three spacewalks, coached Fincke and Chamitoff through their tasks as intravehicluar officer. Astronaut Steve Swanson was spacewalk capcom from the station flight control room. Endeavour Commander Mark Kelly again worked with photo and video documentation.
While the Friday excursion was the last scheduled spacewalk by shuttle astronauts, it also was a day of milestones. At 4:02 a.m.,
Fincke and Chamitoff completed the 1,000th hour of spacewalk activity for space station assembly and maintenance. It also left Fincke on the threshold of a personal mark. About 7 p.m. Friday evening he will become the U.S. astronaut with the most time in space, more than 377 days, including two long-duration station missions. That will surpass the time in space of Peggy Whitson, chief of the Astronaut Office.