During the historic and remarkable all woman spacewalk the one of the NASA astronaut’s spacesuit gloves got spoiled, however, it’s expected to be mere space grease. On October 18, when the ISS’s (International Space Station) BCDU (Battery Charge-Discharge Units) failed, then NASA astronauts Jessica Meir and Christine Koch boarded and had a spacewalk. The BCDU failed, post an earlier spacewalk conducted on October 11.
Although, with the replacement of the faulty part the spacewalk was successful, but when they returned back to the space station, Koch found contamination on one of her gloves. During a webcast post-spacewalk, Koch conveyed her suspicion about the contamination as the grease from the Canadarm2 robotic arm of the space station.
Koch got to experience a unique job of riding the robotic arm to transport the BCDU’s bulky replacement in space. The robotic arm ride has been referred as an incredible honor by her. She stated that although they were trained for such things but as the situation was rare, not many got to avail the experience. A part of her experience was to get a foot restraint installed on the arm’s end. She further continued stating that no doubt, mechanical component of that kind would have lubrication and grease on it. And according to engineers Koch’s hand swept up against that mechanical grease while she was getting that foot restraint installed.
Although, the contamination on the glove of the spacesuit might appear hazardous or mysterious, it is most probably nothing more that the Canadarm2’s grease. As per Koch’s statement the stained gloves are now under analysis in the station to uncover its exact nature.
Koch joked to convey her idea that the stain wasn’t a great deal by remarking that she wished she could maintain her cleanliness when in her spacesuit as she tried doing while eating foods floating around in the space station galley.