May 16, 2009

Astronaut does delicate camera repair

A U.S. astronaut successfully repaired a camera on the Hubble Space Telescope during a spacewalk Saturday, NASA said.

John Grunsfeld, the lead spacewalker in the shuttle Atlantis crew, opened up the Advanced Camera for Surveys and replaced four failed computer cards, Florida Today reported.

The fourth card is out. Woo-hoo, Grunsfeld announced.

Somehow I don't think brain surgeons go 'woo-hoo' when they pull something out, a teammate inside the shuttle responded.

Grunsfeld was joined on the difficult spacewalk by Drew Feustel. On Friday, the two replaced gyroscopes in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration telescope.

The camera repair was difficult because the instrument was not designed to be repaired in space. Grunsfeld had to remove 36 tiny screws before replacing the boards.

The task was originally planned for two days but was compressed into one to allow the crew to do more work during what is to be the last mission to visit the Hubble.