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Watch NASA’s animation previewing Tuesday’s spacewalk

Update on Tuesday, November 30: NASA has postponed Tuesday’s spacewalk at the space station after receiving a notification about nearby debris. A new date will be set once it has assessed the risk to the astronauts, and we’ll update here just as soon as we know.

In recent years NASA has made increasing efforts to engage with space fans, using social media to share information about missions both current and upcoming. The approach helps to spread the word about its work and also, it hopes, to inspire young people to get involved in science and engineering.

NASA’s latest offering, released this week, is a short animation (below) previewing an upcoming spacewalk at the International Space Station (ISS).

The spacewalk — NASA’s ninth this year — will be conducted by American astronauts Thomas Marshburn and Kayla Barron, with fellow ISS astronauts Raja Chari, Mark Vande Hei, and Matthias Maurer providing assistance from inside the space station.

NASA’s seven-minute animation offers a clear and concise overview of the work that will be carried out by Marshburn and Barron. Their main task is to replace a malfunctioning antenna to ensure reliable communications between the space station and controllers back on Earth.

As the animation shows, Canada’s Canadarm — a robotic arm — will also be utilized during the spacewalk, which NASA says is likely to take around six-and-a-half hours to complete.

This will be Marshburn’s fifth spacewalk, following four others in earlier ISS missions in 2013 and 2009. Barron, on the other hand, will be embarking on her first one.

The spacewalk will continue throughout most of Tuesday morning so you can drop by NASA’s livestream whenever you like to take a look at what’s going on. The space agency provides a live commentary, too, so you can fully understand what it is you’re looking at. For full details on times and how to watch, Digital Trends has you covered.

In the meantime, check out this collection of amazing images showing spacewalks from over the years.

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