NASA cuts spacewalk short
July 16, 2013 -- Updated 1825 GMT (0225 HKT)
- Astronaut reports water free-floating inside his helmet
- Spacewalk ends after one hour and 32 minutes
- This water was "not an immediate health hazard" for the astronaut, NASA says
Follow science news from CNN on Twitter and Facebook.
(CNN) -- Water observed pooling inside an astronaut's helmet was reason enough for NASA to cut short a spacewalk Tuesday morning.
The spacewalk outside the International Space Station was planned to last for six and a half hours, but ended after one hour and 32 minutes, said NASA spokesman Kelly Humphries. That makes it, according to NASA's website, the second shortest spacewalk in the history of the space station.
Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano and U.S. astronaut Chris Cassidy were to install backup power equipment to critical station components and prepare cables for a new laboratory module that is due to arrive later this year, NASA said.
Parmitano and Cassidy were able to complete the first task in the spacewalk, Humphries said.
Both astronauts were called back into the station after they and mission control personnel noticed what appeared to be water pooling inside Parmitano's space suit, Humphries said.
Parmitano "reported water free-floating behind his head inside his helmet," NASA's website said.
Cassidy told mission control that Parmitano said the water didn't taste like normal drinking water, Humphries said.
This water was "not an immediate health hazard" for the astronaut, the website said.
Parmitano did not report any problems breathing, Humphries said.
"It was an orderly situation in which the crew members and the team on the ground reacted per their standard procedures, and determined that they needed to end to protect the safety of the astronauts that were out on the EVA," Humphries said. EVA stands for extravehicular activity.
The spacewalk, which began shortly before 8 a.m. ET, has yet to be rescheduled. NASA said that another attempt would not be made Tuesday.
Mission managers will determine when to reschedule the other tasks that the astronauts would have completed on this spacewalk.
An evaluation of what happened is under way, Humphries said.
CNN's John Zarrella contributed to this report
Part of complete coverage on
April 9, 2014 -- Updated 1503 GMT (2303 HKT)
Planetary nebula Abell 33 has taken on romantic proportions.
April 8, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
You can't see it happening on Earth, but space itself is stretching. Ever since the Big Bang happened 13.8 billion years ago, the universe has been getting bigger.
March 26, 2014 -- Updated 2059 GMT (0459 HKT)
Scientists have added another celestial body to the short list of objects in our solar system that have rings around them.
March 27, 2014 -- Updated 1759 GMT (0159 HKT)
Astronomers have discovered a dwarf planet that's even farther away than Pluto.
February 28, 2014 -- Updated 1259 GMT (2059 HKT)
Our galactic neighborhood just got a lot bigger. NASA announced the discovery of 715 new planets.
March 18, 2014 -- Updated 1437 GMT (2237 HKT)
Scientists have made a breakthrough in understanding how our world as we know it came to be.
February 25, 2014 -- Updated 2027 GMT (0427 HKT)
From a sheep ranch in Western Australia comes the oldest slice of Earth we know.
February 19, 2014 -- Updated 1902 GMT (0302 HKT)
Cassiopeia A was a star more than eight times the mass of our sun before it exploded in the cataclysmic, fiery death astronomers call a supernova.
February 10, 2014 -- Updated 2207 GMT (0607 HKT)
Researchers have found clues that water could be flowing in the present, at least during warm seasons.
February 15, 2014 -- Updated 1602 GMT (0002 HKT)
The "jelly doughnut" rock that seemed to appear out of nowhere on Mars last month did not fall out of an extraterrestrial pastry box.
February 7, 2014 -- Updated 0356 GMT (1156 HKT)
It's a dot in the sky.
February 13, 2014 -- Updated 0744 GMT (1544 HKT)
Reports of Jade Rabbit's demise may have been premature.
January 16, 2014 -- Updated 1358 GMT (2158 HKT)
It's rare for astronomers to spot a planet in a star cluster. That's partly why a cluster called Messier 67 is so special: We now know that it has three planets orbiting stars.
December 19, 2013 -- Updated 1203 GMT (2003 HKT)
What do you need to map a billion stars? A billion-pixel camera certainly helps.
December 10, 2013 -- Updated 1950 GMT (0350 HKT)
NASA's rover Curiosity has now given scientists the strongest evidence to date that the environment on the Red Planet could have supported life billions of years ago.
December 7, 2013 -- Updated 1745 GMT (0145 HKT)
NASA's Cassini spacecraft has provided your multicolored space distraction of the day: images of a swirling, six-sided weather feature on the surface of Saturn.
December 9, 2013 -- Updated 2023 GMT (0423 HKT)
Imagine the delight at unwrapping your Christmas present in 2043 and discovering you've been gifted a trip around the Moon.
December 10, 2013 -- Updated 2206 GMT (0606 HKT)
A Dutch company says it is moving along with its plan to send four lucky Earthlings to colonize the Red Planet. The catch: They won't ever come back.
November 19, 2013 -- Updated 1711 GMT (0111 HKT)
You may have heard it before: billions of years ago Mars probably looked more like Earth does now, with clouds and oceans and a much thicker atmosphere.
November 13, 2013 -- Updated 1552 GMT (2352 HKT)
NASA has given the people of Earth a rare treat: A color mosaic that captures not only Saturn, but also the tiny dots of Earth and other planets in the background.
November 5, 2013 -- Updated 1739 GMT (0139 HKT)
Ever have one of those days where you just wanna be alone, maybe have the planet to yourself?
Today's five most popular stories