A towel, taken from the surface of the ISS is being examined for microorganisms that could have inhabited the cloth, lead researcher for the Institute of Medical and Biological Issues of the Russian Academy of Sciences Svetlana Poddubko told RIA Novosti.
It was earlier reported that Russian cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Alexei Ovchinin had removed a towel from the surface of the International Space Station during their scheduled spacewalk. The towel remained outside the station for 10 years.
The towel was originally meant to clean astronauts' spacesuits during their work in outer space. It was left by a Russian cosmonaut about a decade ago. Mr Kononenko and Mr Ovchinin removed the towel from the station's surface and placed it in a special container. It will be sent back to Earth and delivered to a group of experts for further examination.
On Wednesday, Oleg Kononenko and Alexei Ovchinin staged a six-hour maintenance spacewalk. They completed their tasks as part of a test research project, installed handrails between the Poisk and Zarya modules on the Russian segment of the ISS and also performed some other maintenance work.
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