The three-man team headed to the International Space Station next September is heavily-involved in training right now. Lift-off is set for September 25th.
U.S. Air Force Colonel Mike Hopkins will be one of the flight engineers. He says Tuesday's mishap on a space walk at the ISS is being investigated, but he points out it ended without any injuries.
“Trouble-shooting is ongoing and so, we still don’t know what happened,” Colonel Hopkins explains, “and in terms of how that’s going to impact our flight, we still don't know.”
Water leaked into the helmet of the space suit of an Italian astronaut while he was doing some work outside the station. He was able to get back inside without injury, but the mission was cut short for the first time in six years.
Hopkins shrugs off the risk.
“We’re all trained to do any and all missions that we might have up there, and so, we'll wait and see,” he says. “I think we're ready for anything that might be thrown our way.”
Hopkins says he was brought up in a small Missouri town and that has helped prepare him.
“With just 6 of us on boardm” he explains, “I think that sense of community, sharing with each other, helping each other out -- I think that's all important. And, those are things i learned where i grew up.”
The team of two Russian cosmonauts and Hopkins take off from the Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan September 25th.