Shuttle spacewalk killed because of suit trouble
Cape Canaveral, Fla. — The shuttle Columbia's first spacewalk was canceled Monday because of trouble with the $2 million spacesuits two astronauts were to wear outside during their ''extravehicular activity.''
Everything went smoothly until Astronauts Joseph P. Allen and William B. Lenoir put on their spacesuits and started pressurizing them in the ship's sealed airlock. A ventilation fan failed in Dr. Allen's suit, then a pressure regulator went on the blink in Dr. Lenoir's. The dual spacewalk was to have been the first real test of the new generation spacesuits built especially for shuttle missions. The suits each weigh 225 pounds and provide a breathable atmosphere, insulation against temperature extremes, protection against orbital debris, and a communications system, drinking water, and a place to keep a snack.