Yesterday, cosmonauts Fyodor Yurchikhin and Alexander Misurkin completed a six-and-a-half hour spacewalk outside the International Space Station. In addition to performing maintenance and swapping out science experiments, the duo installed power cable clamps for a future module called Nauka. At some point in the near future (possibly December), the Russians plan to detach the Pirs docking module and replace it with Nauka, a Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM). Pirs will be sent tumbling through the atmosphere into a fiery reentry.
During the spacewalk, astronaut Karen Nyberg snapped this photograph from the Cupola:
NASA / Karen Nyberg
Spacewalker Alexander Misurkin
Cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin works during a spacewalk outside the International Space Station on June 24, 2013. Misurkin is illuminated by sunlight near the center of the photo, just below the Pirs airlock.
I like the image because it's both artistic and educational. Misurkin is upside-down near the center of the picture, and his Orlan-MK spacesuit is caught in the sunlight, making him stand out against his shadowed surroundings. Misurkin will surely appreciate the photo as a momento from his first spacewalk.
The image also provides a neat perspective on the station's Russian segment. Misurkin's feet are right below the Pirs module's airlock. At the top of Pirs is Progress M-18M, a resupply vessel that arrived in February. Directly opposite Pirs and out of the frame is the Poisk module, with Soyuz TMA-08M attached.