For the first time in history, an all-female roster of astronauts will be taking part in a spacewalk outside the International Space Station (ISS) of the U.S.' National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
"Experts discuss the 1st all-female spacewalk scheduled to take place on either Thurs., Oct. 17 or Fri., Oct 18," read the tweet from NASA. "@Astro_Christina and @Astro_Jessica will venture outside the @Space_Station for a 6.5-hour spacewalk for station maintenance."
According to a report by Nerdist, ISS residents Christina Koch and Jessica Meir will be upgrading the station's batteries to lithium-ion ones at 7:50 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (7:50 p.m. Manila time) on either October 17 or October 18.
Christina, who will be returning to Earth in February 2020, is also actually bound to set a world record as the first woman to have had a longest-ever continuous stay in space. Their launch was back on March 14.
While the two recognize the milestone that comes with being part of the first-ever all-female spacewalk and the fact that not a lot of women have had the opportunity to do the same in the past, they have shared in an interview that taking gender out of the equation, their work is really more about different people working together in the spirit of space exploration.
“I think the nice thing for us is that we don’t even really think about it on a daily basis,” Meir shared, also noting that "...it's just normal, we’re part of the team, we’re doing this work as an efficient team working together with everybody else, so it’s really nice to see how far we’ve come.”
“In the end, I do think it’s important, and I think it’s important because of the historical nature of what we’re doing, and that in the past women haven’t always been at the table," said Christina. "And it’s wonderful to be contributing to the human spaceflight program at a time when all contributions are being accepted; when everyone has a role, and that, in turn, can lead to an increased chance of success. There are [also] a lot of people that derive motivation from inspiring stories from people that look like them, and I think it’s an important aspect of the story to tell.”
We can't wait to see their spacewalk soon! Watch it at nasa.gov/live.