That Leak on The ISS Was Made by a Person. Here's What We Know So Far

NASA

Mystery continues to swirl around a hole found in the outside of the International Space Station.

Last week, Nasa and the Russian space agency scrambled to fix a leak in the floating laboratory that was causing air to slowly rush out of the space station.

The crew on board eventually plugged up the gap with epoxy, fixing the problem at least temporarily.

Initially, astronauts and other experts had suggested that the hole had been caused a by tiny rock that would have hit the space station and ripped a hole in it. "This leak seems to have resulted from a micrometeoroid impact," tweeted ISS veteran Scott Kelly in one representative tweet.

At first it seemed likely that the tiny hole had come from a micrometeoroid impact - one of the many bullets of debris that whizz around in space.

The theory was even supported by former astronaut Scott Kelly, who explained that this sort of thing happens all the time.

"We've dodged a lot of bullets over the past 20 years," he tweeted.

But as the inquiry progressed, the hole began to look more and more like it came not from the outside, but from the inside.

"We are considering all the theories," said Dmitry Rogozin, head of Roscosmos, according to the Russian news agency Tass.

"The one about a meteorite impact has been rejected because the spaceship's hull was evidently impacted from inside".

Then, things began to get shadier. A photo, released by NASA and then mysteriously deleted, reveals what looks strangely like a drill hole.

"It was done by a human hand - there are traces of a drill sliding along the surface," confirmed Rogozin.

Rogozin assured the media and the public that the Russian space agency was doing everything it could to find the culprit.

Both Nasa and Roscosmos stressed throughout the leak that the astronauts were in no immediate danger, and had been allowed to continue sleeping once the drop in pressure was recognised.

Once they were awake, astronauts worked with experts on the ground to find the hole and then to plug it up – initially, simply by placing a finger over the hole.

Once it was fixed, pressure appears to have stabilised and the astronauts on board have gone back to their usual schedule.

The leak was traced back to the orbital part of the Soyuz capsule, which docked on the side of the International Space Station when it arrived. It is that capsule that astronauts are set to use to come back down to Earth, and work is ongoing to ensure the rest of the craft is safe.

Comments

  1. It is 2018 for f*cks sake.. Grammar and spell check should be an automatic thing you use, especially if you are an 'author' who sucks at both.

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