Feb. 7, 1984: 1st human free-floats on a shuttle spacewalk

Using a jet pack in space, astronaut Bruce McCandless II said, “It’s a heck of a big leap for me.”
2:17 | 12/22/17

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Transcript for Feb. 7, 1984: 1st human free-floats on a shuttle spacewalk
Well I made space history today two astronauts from the challenger shuttle became the first humans to fly free in space no ropes no straps. Just a jet pack the cost 45 million dollars to develop and seem to work exactly right here's ABC's injure. After helping develop a jet backpack for more than fifteen years astronaut Bruce mccandless make sure the world understood the importance of this historic adventure. As he glided free just after 8 this morning eastern time he referred to Neil Armstrong's landing on the moon. Our very good work all got to go. Good good good good good good food. Some only circle the earth of more than 171000 miles an hour make cameras became the first human to fly free in space. Using only his fingertips he controlled the gentle thrusters that lifted him into the dark vacuum 170 miles. The route will. Although we'll you know. Cerberus alerts and then he went for another record. But today people haven't. For a couple more comfortable with for cochlear. Heard. In fact mccandless got to 320 feet from challenger before he came back then there was time for some fun. Yeah. While mccandless blew the backpack astronaut Bob Stewart tested other equipment still tethered then he too took off for free flight. And recruitment inside his monitors mccandless tried out a work platform on the end of the remote arm. Measuring the stress on the arm when used as if cherry picker for repairs. The days spectacular success greatly improve NASA's morale and demonstrated that astronauts can be mobile enough to service satellites in the future. But the space agency still doesn't understand why the two communications satellites launched by challenger landed in the wrong rabbit. Ironically though satellites are not candidates for the repair techniques practiced today because they have no fixtures to grab on to. But despite that crucial unsolved problem here at NASA today everybody is up and very happy. Well insurer ABC news at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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