CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- Spacewalking astronauts armed with brushes and other homemade tools attempted to install a critical power-switching box at the International Space Station on Wednesday and revive electrical systems.
A stiff bolt prevented NASA's Sunita Williams and Japan's Akihiko Hoshide from properly securing the new unit last Thursday. The problem cut the amount of electrical power available to the space station and a variety of equipment had to be turned off.
Williams and Hoshide carted out an assortment of jury-rigged tools to clean the troublesome bolt and its socket. Included in their arsenal: a blue toothbrush and a wire pipe cleaner to deal with the metal shavings discovered last week and any other debris.
The team had four hours to get the box plugged in. Otherwise, the astronauts would have to give up and drag it inside for more extensive work.