Olympic torch begins first-ever spacewalk

This screen image taken from NASA shows the Sochi Olympic torch being held during a spacewalk on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013. Video streamed by the US space agency NASA showed Oleg Kotov and Sergei Ryazanskiy carrying the unlit Olympic torch, bobbing weightlessly at the end of a tether in a darkness dotted by stars. The two gingerly maneuvered to take photos of the torch against the background of the planet, the orb's edge glowing with sunrise. (AP Photo/NASA)
November 9, 2013 3:25:15 PM PST
The Sochi Olympic torch has started its first spacewalk.

NASA Live TV showed Russian cosmonauts Oleg Kotov and Sergei Ryazanskiy carrying the unlit Olympic torch, bobbing weightlessly at the end of a tether in a darkness dotted by stars, outside the International Space Station on Saturday.

The torch was launched into space from the Russian-operated Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Thursday morning. It will return to Earth with a three-man crew on Monday.

The torch will not burn aboard the space outpost because lighting it would consume precious oxygen and pose a threat to the crew.

The Olympic torch was taken aboard the U.S. space shuttle Atlantis in 1996 for the Atlanta Summer Olympics, but this is the first it time it has been taken outside a spacecraft.


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