Historic Images of Final Spacewalk of Shuttle Era

by Nancy Atkinson on July 13, 2011

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With space shuttle Atlantis docked to the space station for the STS-135 mission, the final EVA of the shuttle era took place on July 12, 2011. Here, Ron Garan is secured on a restraint on the space station remote manipulator system's robotic arm or Canadarm2, carrying a faulty pump module will be retuned to Earth by the shuttle. Credit: NASA

It’s the end of an era: the final spacewalk during the space shuttle era was conducted by astronauts on July 12, 2011 during the final shuttle mission, STS-135. This is the 160th spacewalk supporting assembly and maintenance of the space station and the 249th EVA conducted by U.S. astronauts. The two spacwalkers were actually from the International Space Station crew, Expedition 28’s Mike Fossum and Ron Garan, but were assisted by the shuttle crew. Shuttle Pilot Doug Hurley and Mission Specialist Sandy Magnus operated operate the station’s 58-foot-long Canadarm 2 to maneuver the spacewalkers around during the spacewalk.

Here are more images from the EVA:


Astronaut Ron Garan egresses the Quest airlock on the International Space Station as he prepares to join crewmate Mike Fossum for the spacewalk. Credit: NASA

Mike Fossum works outside the ISS during the six and a half hour spacewalk, the final of the shuttle era. Credit: NASA.

No, this isn't a picture of an astronaut carrying a freezer outside the space station. With his feet secured on a restraint on the space station remote manipulator system's robotic arm Canadarm2, Mike Fossum holds the Robotics Refueling Mission payload, an experiment which will test in-flight refueling with the DEXTRE robot. Fossum and Ron Garan installed the experiment during the July 12 EVA. Credit: NASA

Suspended in a very unique position on the end of Canadarm2, Mike Fossum takes a picture during a July 12 spacewalk. Credit: NASA

Space shuttle Atlantis makes a cameo in this image as Mike Fossum takes a picture during the spacewalk while on a foot restraint on the Canadarm 2. Credit: NASA

Ron Garan during the spacewalk: "I almost had 1 foot in day and 1 foot in night Orbital sunset," said Garan via Twitter of this picture. Credit: NASA

A view of the Cupola on the ISS, and if you look closely, you can see faces of several of the Atlantis STS-135 and Expediton 28 crewmembers looking out the windows. Credit: NASA

Another view of Mike Fossum during the spacewalk. Credit: NASA

A close-up view of Mike Fossum during the final EVA of the shuttle era. Credit: NASA

With his feet secured on a restraint on Canadarm2, Mike Fossum holds the Robotics Refueling Mission payload. The failed pump module is with DEXTRE in the upper left corner of the photo. The blue color on the space station module is a reflection from the blue of planet Earth. Credit: NASA

"Knocking on the door to come back in from space after yesterday's spacewalk," said Ron Garan via Twitter. Credit: NASA

Following the six-hour, 31-minute EVA, spacewalkers Ron Garan (top left) and Mike Fossum (top right), pose in the ISS’s Quest airlock with Chris Ferguson, STS-135 commander, Doug Hurley, pilot, and Rex Walheim, mission specialist. Credit: NASA

Here’s how astronauts train for their EVAs, in the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) near NASA's Johnson Space Center. Here astronauts Rex Walheim and Sandy Magnus (mostly obscured), are raised from the waters of the N as a spacewalk training session comes to a close. Divers were in the water to assist Magnus and Walheim in their rehearsal. Credit: NASA

For larger versions of any of these images, and to see more images from the STS-135 mission, see NASA’s Human Spaceflight website’s mission gallery.

About 

Nancy Atkinson is Universe Today's Senior Editor. She also is the host of the NASA Lunar Science Institute podcast and works with Astronomy Cast. Nancy is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.

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