On 29th March, two female astronauts of NASA – Anne McClain and Christina Koch will make history by leaving the premises of the International Space Station (ISS) and into the space to perform the first ever all-female spacewalk.
Almost 35 years since Soviet astronaut Svetlana Savitskaya became the first woman to perform a spacewalk in 1984, two American female astronauts are preparing to conduct the first all-female spacewalk on March 29, 2019. NASA confirmed the all-female mission schedule and stated that the two women will head out in space for seven-hours – and under the name of “Expedition 59”, they will replace the space station batteries that were installed last summer. The entire coverage of the spacewalk will be aired by NASA on its website, social media channels and on NASA TV on March 29, at 6:30 AM PST.
NASA added that along with astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch, the mission will be supported behind the scenes by two other women – Mary Lawrence, who will serve as the spacewalk’s lead flight director and Jackie Kagey as lead spacewalk flight controller. On ground, Canadian Space Agency (CSA) flight controller Kristen Facciol will be playing the supportive role on console for the spacewalk from NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. And Facciol happens to be the one who broke the news about NASA’s upcoming all-women spacewalk, via a tweet.
I just found out that I’ll be on console providing support for the FIRST ALL FEMALE SPACEWALK with @AstroAnnimal and @Astro_Christina and I can not contain my excitement!!!! #WomenInSTEM #WomenInEngineering #WomenInSpace
— Kristen Facciol (@kfacciol) March 1, 2019
A total of 213 spacewalks have been conducted from the International Space Station since December 1998, and the one on March 29 will be book itself a page in the history of space research. The announcement of this mission comes out right on the heels of International Women’s Day, when NASA is celebrating the month of March as the Women’s History Month. The space agency has also dedicated a page on women who have contributed in space research from all sectors.