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Problems on ISS pose no threat to crews - Russian space agency

RIA Novosti

15/06/2007 11:02 MOSCOW, June 15 (RIA Novosti) - Problems on the world's sole orbiter caused by computer faults pose no threat to the space crews, the spokesman for the Russian space agency said Friday.

Two false fire alarms caused by computer failure went off in the Russian Zarya module of the International Space Station on the night of June 13-14. Experts believe the computer faults could have been caused by changes in the ISS configuration after new solar arrays were connected.

"There is no threat to the life of the cosmonauts. The crews of the 15th expedition and the NASA astronauts are feeling well. The orbit flight parameters of the Russian segment of the International Space Station are normal," Igor Panarin said.

Panarin said measures were planned for June 15 to correct the computer failure, adding that Russia's Mission Control was restarting the ISS' six major computers.

An expert involved in efforts to correct software faults onboard the ISS told RIA Novosti that a spacewalk by NASA astronauts could help resolve the problems.

"During a spacewalk, the astronauts will be able to check the solar arrays' plugs connected before. Now many experts admit that there were problems with the plugging in of new solar arrays, and a spacewalk by the astronauts who will check the electrical connectors could indirectly identify the reasons for the computer failure on the orbiter," the expert said.

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