On Monday, June 14, NASA hosted a news conference at the Johnson Space Center in Houston to discuss upcoming spacewalks to install new solar arrays to help power the International Space Station. The news conference participants were; Dana Weigel, deputy manager, International Space Station Program, Pooja Jesrani, spacewalk flight director, Kieth Johnson, spacewalk officer, and Dan Hartman, manager, Gateway Program
On Wednesday, June 16 and Sunday, June 20, NASA flight engineer Shane Kimbrough and ESA Astronaut (European Space Agency) Thomas Pesquet will exit the space station to install two of six ISS Roll-Out Solar Arrays (iROSAs) to ultimately upgrade six of the station’s eight power channels. They will install the first array on the far end of the left (port) side of the station’s backbone truss structure (P6) to upgrade the 2B power channel. On Sunday, June 20, the duo will install the second solar array to upgrade the 4B power channel on the P6 truss. The solar arrays arrived at the station in the SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft as part of the company’s 22nd commercial resupply services mission to the station. This spacewalk will be the seventh for Kimbrough, and the third for Pesquet. This will also be the third and fourth spacewalk Kimbrough and Pesquet will conduct together, following two Expedition 50 spacewalks in January and March 2017. These will be the 239th and 240th spacewalks in support of station assembly, maintenance, and upgrades.