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Russia to replace ISS oxygen regeneration system in 2007

MISSION CONTROL (Moscow Region), September 29 (RIA Novosti) - Russia will deliver a new oxygen regeneration system to the International Space Station in spring 2007, a Russian Space Agency official said Friday.

"We are planning to deliver a new Elektron oxygen regeneration system to the ISS in the second quarter of next year," Alexei Krasnov told a news conference.

The current Elektron system has been experiencing a number of problems as its operation life is coming to an end.

Last time, it was turned off September 20 after high temperatures damaged its rubber seals. The crew replaced one of the system's blocks, checked the electrical circuit and the thermal control before putting the system back on.

But the Russian official said that the Elektron failure could not cause serious problems for the ISS crew because the station has three oxygen regeneration systems and an emergency supply of oxygen from tanks aboard a Progress spacecraft docked with the station.

A NASA official said at the same news conference that the Discovery shuttle delivered a new U.S. oxygen regeneration system to the ISS in summer 2006 and it would be put into operation in spring next year after additional equipment is brought on board the station.

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