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An ammonia leak in the International Space Station? False alert!

False alert! Jean-Jacques Dordain, president of the European Space Agency (ESA) reassures: the incident which took place yesterday on board the ISS was only a minor failure.

ISS During the day yesterday, an alarm indicates a pressure drop in the station's cooling circuit. Immediately, ground engineers feared a toxic leak of ammonia, a colorless gas used to cool the station's various instruments.

Consequently, the 6 occupants of the station were confined to the Russian part of the station, the time to carry out more detailed diagnostics.

If NASA had not indicated the nature of the leak, sharing several hypotheses without real alarmist tone on its Twitter account, it is the Russian agency Roskosmos which raised the panic by declaring "A toxic substance has been emitted since a cooling circuit in the atmosphere of the station in the American segment of the ISS around 11:44 am Moscow time. "

We remember that the station had already suffered from an ammonia leak a few months ago, but it had declared itself outside the station. It had been repaired by two astronauts after several hours of excursion spread over a few days.