Here am I, sitting in a leaky tin can

 作者:狐倚     |      日期:2019-03-08 03:11:00
By Robert Adler AN AIR leak that has been plaguing the Mir space station now appears to be under control. But it may yet delay Russia’s plans to bring home the ageing station’s crew. Mir began losing air pressure about two weeks ago. Its crew, two Russians and a French man, were asked to seal off sections of the station to isolate the leak. At a press conference in Moscow earlier this week, officials announced that the leak had been tracked down to a module used to stage spacewalks—which is now safely sealed from the rest of the station. Although the astronauts are not in immediate danger, the fate of their mission remains unclear. A Progress supply ship was scheduled for launch from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan this week. Its cargo includes supples and a new guidance system to keep Mir under control after the astronauts’ planned departure at the end of August. But as New Scientist went to press, Baikonur was still closed following a failed rocket launch (see “Out to launch”). The guidance system will take a month to install and test. So if Russian officials can’t convince the Kazakh authorities to reopen the launch site quickly,