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NASA still perplexed by astronaut's flooded helmet

Thursday - 7/18/2013, 2:08pm  ET

U.S. astronaut Chris Cassidy uses a still camera during a spacewalk outside the International Space Station on Tuesday, July 16, 2013 before Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano, not in frame, reported water inside his helmet and the walk was aborted. (AP Photo/NASA)

MARCIA DUNN
AP Aerospace Writer

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- The spacewalking astronaut who came close to drowning in a flooded helmet searched for clues in his spacesuit Wednesday, in hopes of understanding the unprecedented water leak.

Engineers in Houston, meanwhile, conducted their own investigation into what should have been a routine, yet still risky, maintenance job outside the International Space Station.

But a day after one of NASA's most harrowing spacewalks in decades, answers eluded the experts.

"There still is no smoking gun or definite cause of what happened or why that water ended up" inside Luca Parmitano's spacesuit, said NASA spokesman Kelly Humphries.

Parmitano, Italy's first and only spacewalker, could not hear or speak by the time he re-entered the space station on Tuesday, 1
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