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US Endeavour Astronauts Complete 3rd Spacewalk

VOA News May 25, 2011

U.S. astronauts Andrew Feustel and Mike Fincke have completed the third spacewalk of their mission servicing the International Space Station, installing cables for its power system and completing work on a wireless communications system.

The astronauts, part of the crew on the final voyage of the space shuttle Endeavour, spent nearly seven hours outside the space station. They worked a large part of the time on the Russian segment of the space station, adding equipment to provide more power to that area and hooking up an attachment for the station's robotic arm.

One more spacewalk is scheduled for this mission before the shuttle returns to Earth in early June.

Meanwhile, officials with the U.S. space agency NASA said they will make a final attempt in trying to contact an exploratory vehicle on the planet Mars that has not returned communications in more than a year.

Officials said they will try to make contact with the Spirit rover on Wednesday. They say that there is little chance the crippled craft has survived the brutal Martian winter.

The Spirit rover and its still-functioning twin, Opportunity, landed on Mars in early 2004 on a three-month mission to search for signs that Mars may once have contained water.

Both rovers continued to function long after they completed that mission. Spirit developed a series of mechanical and data-storage problems that culminated in its now-dormant state. Opportunity continues to explore the Martian landscape and send back reports of its findings.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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