Sunday 25 February 2018

Spacewalking astronauts release 3D-printed satellite

Russian astronaut Sergei Ryazansky holds a mini satellite before launching it by hand from the International Space Station (Nasa via AP)
Russian astronaut Sergei Ryazansky holds a mini satellite before launching it by hand from the International Space Station (Nasa via AP)

Spacewalking astronauts have set free the world's first satellite made with a 3D printer.

Russians Fyodor Yurchikhin and Sergey Ryazanskiy ventured outside the International Space Station and released five nano-satellites by hand.

The casing of the first one to be released was made entirely with a 3D printer.

Researchers want to see how 3D-made parts weather the space environment.

The others have traditional spacecraft parts.

Each weighs 10lbs to 24lbs and is 1ft to 2ft. They are expected to orbit for six months.

One commemorates the 60th anniversary of the world's first satellite, Sputnik 1, launched on October 4 1957.

Another pays tribute to Russia's father of rocketry, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky.

He was born 160 years ago next month.

Press Association

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