The president of Russia’s Roscosmos space agency stated on Monday that a coolant leak from a Russian Soyuz spacecraft docked at the International Space Station (ISS) was caused by a hole less than one millimeter in diameter.
NASA discovered a jet of fluid spewing from the spacecraft last week, forcing the cancellation of a spacewalk by two Russian cosmonauts. Since then, the temperature inside the capsule has increased, and Roscosmos is working quickly to determine the cause and find a solution.
“A preliminary check has shown that there is a small hole, around 0.8 millimeters, which caused the depressurization,” said Yuri Borisov, the head of Roscosmos.
Borisov stated that the crew was not in danger and was presently stationed inside the ISS.
The Canadarm2, a 17-meter-long robotic arm used by Roscosmos to perform maintenance, would inspect the capsule.
Temperatures aboard the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft were now stabilized below 30 degrees Celsius, according to Borisov, and the capsule was in working order. However, he described the situation as “clearly not very good.”
Moreover, he stated that a panel would decide what next steps should be taken by the month’s end.
Roscosmos has advanced planning to potentially send a backup spaceship to transport the cosmonauts back to Earth if the docked Soyuz MS-22 fails. Borisov stated that the standby spacecraft would launch on February 19.
Russia has revealed plans to withdraw from the International Space Station (ISS) and launch its space station.
Borisov, the new head of Roscosmos, has warned the ISS has outlived its purpose and is “dangerous.”