NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 12 October, 2021 - Robotic Research


Cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy trains on a computer.

The Expedition 65 crew kicked off the work week with robotics research, combustion, and life science as the International Space Station orbits a little higher today.

Three Russian orbital residents are also preparing for their return to Earth this weekend.

NASA Flight Engineer Shane Kimbrough worked in the NanoRacks Bishop airlock today installing cameras, work lights and the new GITAI robotic arm technology demonstration. The GITAI tech demo will test the small robotic arm's ability to push buttons, flip switches, and plug and unplug cables inside the station saving the crew time.

NASA Flight Engineer Megan McArthur opened up the Combustion Integrated Rack and replaced components for the ACME series of gaseous flame studies today. Akihiko Hoshide, Flight Engineer from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), participated in a cognition test for the Standard Measures experiment before setting up the wearable Bio-Monitor that monitors crew health.

Commander Thomas Pesquet of ESA (European Space Agency) spent most of the day servicing laptop computers and swapping out science hardware in the Columbus laboratory module. NASA Flight Engineer Mark Vande Hei had a light duty day as well as conducted a ham radio pass with students from England.

The return to Earth of Roscosmos Flight Engineer Oleg Novitskiy and spaceflight participants Yulia Peresild and Klim Shipenko is still on track for Oct. 17 just after midnight Eastern time. The trio will undock from the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module inside the Soyuz MS-18 crew ship and parachute to a landing in Kazakhstan on Sunday at 12:36 a.m. EDT (10:36 a.m. Kazakh time).

Novitskiy continued packing the Soyuz MS-18 then joined cosmonaut Pyotr Dubrov and tested the lower body negative pressure suit that may help crew members adjust to gravity after returning to Earth. Veteran cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov studied how microgravity affects the circulatory system before moving on to filmmaking activities with the other two cosmonauts and the two spaceflight participants.

The space station's Zvezda service module fired it engines for 39 seconds early Tuesday morning lifting the station's orbit by just over half-a-mile. The orbital reboost readies the station for December's planned approach and rendezvous of the Soyuz MS-20 crew ship with one Russian cosmonaut and two Japanese spaceflight participants.

On-Orbit Status Report


Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments (ACME): A crewmember replaced the ACME Thermocouple Array with the ACME Chamber Insert partially installed in the chamber. The ACME Chamber was re-Inserted into the chamber, and the crew replaced three ACME controllers. The ACME project is a set of six independent studies of gaseous flames to be conducted in the Combustion Integrated Rack (CIR). ACME's primary and secondary goals are (1) improve fuel efficiency and reduce pollutant production in practical combustion on Earth, and (2) spacecraft fire prevention through innovative research focused on materials flammability.

GITAI S1 Robotic Arm Tech Demo: A crewmember installed the NanoRacks GITAI hardware into the NanoRacks Air Lock (NRAL). GITAI S1 Robotic Arm Tech Demo (NanoRacks-GITAI Robotic Arm) demonstrates the versatility and dexterity in microgravity of a robot designed by GITAI Japan Inc. For the demonstration, the robot conducts common crew activities and tasks via supervised autonomy and teleoperations from the ground. Robotic labor could reduce the cost of spacecraft operations and improve safety by taking on tasks that could expose crew members to hazardous risks.

Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Public Relations Activity (JAXA EPO): A crewmember recorded a video interview with QuizKnock, a YouTuber. The video taken will be posted in November. The JAXA EPO includes conducting cultural activities such as writing reports about and filming video of activities aboard the ISS. These tools can help inform the public about the importance of the ISS, JAXA's Kibo module, and human spaceflight.

Maritime Awareness: A crewmember removed and stowed the Maritime Awareness payload hardware. Nearly all commercial ships on the world's oceans are being tracked and monitored using the Automatic Identification System (AIS), but the curvature of the Earth blocks the signals when ships are far from shore. The Global AIS on Space Station (GLASS) (Maritime Awareness) investigation uses a space-based AIS receiver system on the International Space Station (ISS) to acquire and disseminate ship information. During a 12-month test period, the system's ability to continuously monitor ships for use in commercial, safety and security, environmental, and educational applications is investigated. Should the test period prove successful, the AIS data will be made commercially available.

NanoRacks Airlock (NRAL): A crewmember installed four IP Cameras into the NRAL. The NanoRacks Bishop Airlock (NanoRacks Airlock) is the first-ever commercially owned and operated airlock on the International Space Station. It provides a variety of capabilities including jettisoning of payloads such as CubeSats, deployment of external payloads, support for small exterior payloads and locker-sized internal payloads, recovery of external on-orbit replaceable units (ORUs), and the ability to move hardware outside in support of extravehicular activities (EVAs). It is approximately five times larger than the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) Airlock so it can accommodate more and larger payloads. The Airlock's capabilities support many different types of scientific investigations.

NanoRacks CubeSats Deployer-21 (NRCSD-21): A crewmember took photos of the Satellite deployments. The NanoRacks CubeSat Deployer (NRCSD) is a self-contained CubeSat deployer system that mechanically and electrically isolates CubeSats and has been in operation since 2014. NRCSD-21 will be launching CAP Sat (Cooling, Annealing, and Pointing Satellite), PR-CuNa R2 (Puerto Rico CubeSat NanoRocks-2), and SPACE HAUC (Science Program Around Communications Engineering with High Achieving Undergraduate Cadres).

Ring Sheared Drop: A crewmember removed the existing syringe and test cell and installed a new syringe and new test cell into Ring Sheared Drop hardware in MSG Work Volume. The Ring Sheared Drop investigation examines the formation and flow of amyloids without the complications associated with the solid walls of a container, because in microgravity, surface tension provides containment of the liquid. Fibrous, extracellular protein deposits found in organs and tissues; amyloids are associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's. Results could contribute to better understanding of these diseases as well as to development of advanced materials.

Vascular Aging: A crewmember initiated a 13-hour Blood Pressure measurement session by setting up the data session on the Mobil-O-Graph unit, the EPL laptop, and then donned the arm cuff hardware. The crewmember also performed the setup for the Bio-Monitor garment and headband for data gathering during the sleep period. Emerging data points towards linkages among cardiovascular health risk, carotid artery aging, bone metabolism and blood biomarkers, insulin resistance, and radiation. Data indicates that aging-like changes are accelerated in many ISS crew members, particularly with respect to their arteries. As part of the Space Environment Causes Acceleration of Vascular Aging: Roles of Hypogravity, Nutrition, and Radiation (Vascular Aging) investigation, ultrasounds of the arteries, blood samples, oral glucose tolerance, and wearable sensors from ISS crew members are analyzed.


Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis & Data Record: Crew performed an analysis of the water processing assembly (WPA) using the TOCA. The TOCA unit oxidizes organic carbon species present in the water to carbon dioxide gas and measures the concentration using nondispersive infrared spectroscopy. Analysis of the potable water using the TOCA occurs on a weekly basis. The crew replaced the TOCA Waste Water Bag (WWB) just prior to the sample collection to preclude overfill.

Completed Task List Activities:

Today's Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

Japanese Experiment Module Remote Manipulator System (JEMRMS) Ground Control CubeSat Deployment
JEM Airlock Slide Table Extension to JEF side
JEM Airlock Capture Mechanism Capturing
Video System Port 1 Upper Outboard Luminaire Checkout
JEM Airlock Slide Table Retraction from JEF side
Look Ahead Plan

Wednesday, October 13 (GMT 286)

CIR Manifold 2 and 4 bottle exchange (NASA)
Food Acceptability (NASA)
Immersive Exercise session (ESA)
ManD print remove and stow
MMA to PLT3 adapter fix
POLAR desiccant swap
Standard Measures Saliva, body and fecal collect and presleep question (NASA)
Vascular Aging Blood Pressure Changeout (CSA)

Cargo Ops
Dragon Undock Prep
XF705 Camcorder Deploy
JPM Smoke Detector Cleaning
COL Hardware Trash
JSL 20-Port Switch
Thursday, October 14 (GMT 287)

Behavioral Core Measures ROBOT test (NASA)
CIR manifold 4 bottle exchange (NASA)
GLACIER desiccant swap
IPU2 Camcorder connect (JAXA)
POLAR desiccant swap
Standard Measures Saliva, body and fecal collect and presleep question (NASA)
TOILET PT tank install
Vascular Aging monitor data transfer and stow (CSA)

JSL 20-Port Switch
Clear Temperature and Humidity Control Keep Out Zone
Spaceflight Participant Cupola Escort and Familiarization
Cargo Ops
PAO Events
Setup XF305 Camcorder for real-time downlink
JEM Stowage Consolidation
Friday, October 15 (GMT 288)

Behavioral Core Measures test (NASA)
Immersive Exercise VR system charge
JAXA Video Take 10 (JAXA)
LSG port cycle
NanoRacks CubeSat-21 Deployer removal (NASA)
Standard Measures Saliva collect and Cognition test (NASA)
STPH5 - ICE Photo (NASA)

Spaceflight Participant Cupola Escort and Familiarization
XF705 Camcorder Deploy in JEM
Airlock Closeout Panel A/L1D0 Installation
Cargo Ops
EVA Battery File Transfer
Stall Handrail Offset Bracket Installation
Today's Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

HRF Generic MELFI Sample Insertion Operations
Vascular Aging 13-Hour Blood Pressure Monitoring Initialization
Troubleshooting activity for the VR Headset
Combustion Integrated Rack Hardware Gather
Vascular Aging 13-hour Blood Pressure Monitoring Crew Time Payback
Urine Transfer System Offload EDV Swap
JAXA Video Taking Part 9
IPU2 Checkout Part 1 Closeout
Standard Measures Cognition Testing
NanoRacks NRAL GITAI Hardware Gather
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis
GITAI XF305 Video Setup
NanoRacks Air Lock (NRAL) IP Camera Installation
ISS HAM Columbus Pass Kenwood
Standard Measures Fecal Collection Setup
MPCC DEMO Laptop De-installation
Columbus COL1D4 labels covering
CMAU Initial Installation
Vascular Aging Bio-Monitor Big Picture Words Review
Bio-Monitor Hardware Setup
NanoRacks CubeSat Deployment Photos
ODF update on iPad and Samsung tablets
In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Hydrogen (H2) Foam Swap
BIOS Setup of the Columbus Monitoring and Administration Unit
Software Image Installation on the Columbus Monitoring and Administration Unit
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Open
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Sample Data Record
Verification of correct Software Installation and reboot of the Columbus Monitoring and Administration Unit (CMAU) laptop
Combustion Integrated Rack Chamber Open
NanoRacks Air Lock (NRAL) GITAI Installation
LUMINA data transfer and parameters changes with EveryWear
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Social Media Event
ACME Chamber Insert Configuration
Bio-Monitor Wearables Setup
Light Ions Detector Data Acquisition Unit Move 2
Public Affairs Office (PAO) High Definition (HD) Config JEM Setup
PAO Preparation
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) - JEM
Wireless VR Headset charging for Immersive Exercise
Combustion Integrated Rack Front End Cap Close
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Close
Light Ions Detector Data Acquisition Unit Return 2
Ring-Sheared Drop Syringe and Test Cell Removal and Install
Combustion Integrated Rack Hardware Return
RSD MELFI Sample Insertion
Vascular Aging 13-hour Blood Pressure Monitoring Mobil-O-Graph Unit Power Off
HRF Generic Saliva Collection 10 Minutes

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