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International Space Station Crew Repairs Air Leak With Epoxy, Tape


A file photo of the International Space Station

Retired Russian cosmonaut Maksim Surayev says a "micro" pressure leak in a compartment of a Russian Soyuz spacecraft docked with the International Space Station (ISS) has been repaired with epoxy resin and tape.

Surayev, who is now a State Duma deputy from the United Russia party, made the remarks on August 31 after NASA and Russian officials confirmed that the ISS crew repaired a small hole caused by a collision with a "micrometeorite."

NASA and Roskosmos said the six-member crew aboard the ISS was not in any danger.

NASA said the leak was detected by pressure sensors on an ISS module on August 30 while the ISS crew was sleeping.

The leak was caused by a hole about 2 millimeters in diameter that penetrated a compartment of the Soyuz MS-09 spaceship which had brought three crewmen to the ISS on June 8.

A Russian cosmonaut prevented further loss of oxygen by placing his finger over the puncture until the repairs with epoxy and tape could be carried out.

"The space station’s maintenance kit has many elements, mostly epoxide resin, which is diluted for repair purposes," Surayev explained. "This is regular epoxy resin sold in stores. A tape is applied, it is covered with epoxy resin and the leak is stopped."

The crew aboard the ISS consists of European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst, NASA astronauts Drew Feustel, Ricky Arnold, and Serena Aunon, and two Russian cosmonauts -- Oleg Artemyev and Sergei Prokopyev.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, Interfax, and Rossia-24
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