NASA Shut Down All-Female Space Walk

American astronaut Anne Mc Clain at work at the International Space Station

NASA has aborted its mission for a first-ever all-female spacewalk around the International Space Station because there are not enough spacesuits to fit the female astronauts, the agency said.

NASA said McClain learned during her first spacewalk that a medium-sized hard upper torso - essentially the shirt of the spacesuit - fits her better than a large.

Both McClain and Koch required medium spacesuit torso sections, and there is now only one that is properly configured at the International Space Station, NASA said in a statement on Monday.

McClain completed her first spacewalk on March 22 with NASA astronaut Nick Hague.

Photos of NASA astronauts Anne C. McClain, left, and Christina Hammock Koch. "An optimally fitted spacesuit improves an astronaut's ability to accomplish the tasks".

Astronauts conducting a spacewalk will generally wear atleast two kinds of space suits during their time away from Earth. McClain did her EVA (extravehicular activity) in a size large spacesuit and quickly realized it wasn't working. Thus, she'll have the share the suit with Koch, who will wear the medium torso on March 29. Because in all the careful planning and back-up planning and packing that goes into a space trip, NASA somehow overlooked the fact that they needed more than one spacesuit that would fit the women they have onboard.




Dean said spacesuits come in medium, large and extra large sixes.

The plan is for the pair to lay out jumper cables between the Unity module and the S0 truss, at the midpoint of the station's backbone, during their April 8 spacewalk.

The NASA logo is displayed at the agency's booth during CES 2018 at the Las Vegas Convention Center on January 11, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Fewer than 220 of these walks have occurred since the ISS launched into orbit in 1998.

"To date, almost 60 American women have flown in space", according to The Atlantic. Koch and Hague will conduct the spacewalk this week.

The original announcement about the spacewalk was met with huge praise earlier this month, with aerospace engineer Kristen Facciol tweeting her excitement about being selected for console during the event. She later earned master's degrees in aerospace engineering and worldwide relations.

It's a continuation of the work performed on the first spacewalk, and the battery upgrades are set to be performed over the next couple of years. Still, the likelihood of an all-female spacewalk will continue to increase as more and more women become astronauts and participate in spacewalks.

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