New Pump Fixed Space Station Leak, NASA Says

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (May 16, 2013)--An impromptu spacewalk to install a new pump seems to have fixed a big ammonia leak at the International Space Station, NASA said Thursday.

The "gusher" erupted on May 9.

Two days later, spacewalking astronauts replaced a suspect ammonia pump.

NASA now calls the old, removed pump "Mr. Leaky."

On Thursday, a Mission Control official said the repairs definitely took care of the big leak.

Engineers don't know whether the pump replacement also took care of a smaller leak that has plagued the system for years. It will take at least a couple months of monitoring to know the full status.

Ammonia is used as a coolant in the space station's radiator system.

The leak forced one of the station's seven power channels to go offline.

NASA hopes to resume normal operations early next week.


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