The International Space Station is still losing oxygen, but the situation is under control, the Russian space agency Roskosmos said on Saturday, ready to send additional supplies of oxygen if the agency exacerbated the problem.
The leak is affecting the Russian section of the ISS, mistakenly located in the access section of the Zahweda module. Russian media reported that the exact location is not yet clear.
“We have had this leak for a long time, the rate is very small, nothing has happened. One of the leaks has been found and reduced,” said Roskosmos program director Sergei Krikalev to Russia’s Interfax Agency. Still remains. “
The pressure is increasing to find the source of the leak, as oxygen reserves and air pressure continue to decrease.
Cause of damage unknown
A 4.5-centimeter (1.7-inch) rip was already open in October with the help of a floating tea bag, and was sealed.
The astronauts, unaware of what caused the damage, then realized that there was another leak from elsewhere in the same section of the 20-year-old spacecraft. However, they failed to find fault during a spacewalk in November.
Astronauts are considering the possibility of sealing the affected section and using oxygen reserves, but say it will affect the overall operation of the ISS.
‘Everything is under control’
Roscosmos has stated that there are no threats to seven people in the ISS, including four American, two Russian and one Japanese astronauts.
The agency’s head, Dimitri Rogozin, assured the public that there are reserves of oxygen on board and a scheduled cargo delivery in February would include oxygen.
“First, the station itself has oxygen reserves. That is, if it is necessary to replenish oxygen and nitrogen in the event of loss of atmospheric pressure, we have such reserves. And we are going to send a cargo ship to the ISS in February It already has an oxygen supply, “Rozhin was told by Russia’s TASS news agency.
“If necessary, we can use our relationship with NASA and ship part of the cargo including oxygen with an American cargo ship,” Roslin said. “There is no need to worry, everything is fine, everything is under control.”
mvb / dj (dpa, interfax)