A Russian module on the International Space Station has developed cracks. The cracks were reported on Zarya. The cracks are said to be small. But it may widen. Zarya was the first ISS component launched to the space station. It was launched in 1998. The module provided services like electrical power, storage, and more to the rotating laboratory during the early stage of assembly. Interestingly, Zarya is funded by the United States. However, Russia built and launched the module. Russia has confirmed that superficial fissures have been observed in some places on Zarya. It remains unclear if the cracks pose any threat to the ISS.
Russia didn’t confirm if the cracks were causing any air to leak from the ISS. This is not the first time cracks have been developed on the space station. The laboratory had earlier reported similar cracks in 2019. At that time as well cracks were found on a Russian module. The module in the question was Zvezda. Cracks on Zvezda then resulted in a small air leak. The cracks were fixed by cosmonauts in 2020. In March this year, cosmonauts undertook an exercise to fix the cracks as air leaks persisted. The module was launched in 2000. Russia last month again reported a pressure drop in the module.
ISS is used for conducting space research by astronauts. The first component was launched in 1998. It has been hosting astronauts from around the world since 2000 in low Earth orbit. The space station is the largest structure to be ever launched by humans. The ISS is so huge that it can be seen from naked eyes. In July this year, Russia launched its long-delayed Nauka module. But the module’s thrusters unexpectedly fired after docking. This caused the ISS to shift from its track. It was even shoved 45 degrees. It was, however, repositioned to normal. The ISS is a collaborative project of the US, Canada, Russia, Japan, and Europe. Meanwhile, Russia is planning to set up its own space station.