NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 15 December, 2021 - Human Muscular and Circulatory Systems and Botany Research

©NASA

The station pictured from the SpaceX Crew Dragon. (Dec. 8, 2021)

Wednesday's research schedule aboard the International Space Station highlighted the human muscular and circulatory systems as well as botany.

The Expedition 66 crew also continued its space physics studies while working on docked Russian spacecraft.

The lack of gravity affects the human body and station crew members exercise about two hours a day to counteract the loss of bone and muscle. Flight Engineers Thomas Marshburn of NASA and Matthias Maurer of ESA (European Space Agency) focused their science work today on how weightlessness affects the biochemical properties of muscles. Maurer scanned Marshburn's arm, leg, back and neck muscles with an ultrasound device before and after the NASA astronaut worked out on the Advanced Resistive Exercise Device (ARED). Observations may help doctors increase muscle health in space and on Earth.

NASA Flight Engineer Raja Chari is setting up the Advanced Plant Habitat in the Kibo laboratory module which will house a space botany experiment launching on the next SpaceX Cargo Dragon mission. Over in the U.S. Destiny laboratory module, NASA Flight Engineers Kayla Barron and Mark Vande Hei took turns researching how to manipulate nanoparticles for the InSPACE-4 space manufacturing study.

In the station's Russian segment, Expedition 66 Commander Anton Shkaplerov unpacked cargo from the ISS Progress 79 cargo craft and inspected the Rassvet, Poisk and Nauka modules. Flight Engineer Pyotr Dubrov focused on electronics work and cable connections.

Visiting Flight Engineer Alexander Misurkin from Roscosmos loaded gear and readied the Soyuz MS-20 crew ship for its return on Sunday. Japanese spaceflight participants Yusaku Maezawa and Yozo Hirano spent the day videotaping and photographing the Earth and continued more research into how the circulatory system behaves in space.

On-Orbit Status Report

Payloads:

EasyMotion: After donning the EasyMotion Suit, the crew performed Treadmill 2 (T2) exercise science session. Following the experiment session, the crew removed the suit and charged the experiment batteries. The EasyMotion investigation uses whole body Electro-Myo-Stimulation (EMS) with a wearable body skin suit for an ISS crew member to perform pre- and postflight EMS-assisted exercises. EMS technology initiates spontaneous (involuntary) activation of global musculature (muscle, tendon, fascia) to be monitored (muscle tone/tension and stiffness) inflight using the non-invasive Myoton technology that is currently aboard the space station for the Myotones investigation.

Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Ellipsoids-4 (InSPACE-4): The crew set the appropriate parameters and adjusted the camera field of view for experiment runs 89-90. InSPACE-4 studies the assembly of tiny structures from colloids using magnetic fields. These structures change the properties of the assembled material, such as its mechanical response to or interaction with light and heat. Microgravity allows observation of these assembly processes free of confining sample walls and sedimentation and during timescales not possible using simulated microgravity. Results could provide insight into how to harness nanoparticles to fabricate and manufacture new materials.

Light Ions Detector for Anomalous Long Term Effects in Astronauts (ALTEA) (LIDAL): The LIDAL hardware was placed in its EXpedite the PRocessing of Experiments to Space Station (EXPRESS) (EXPRESS) Rack 3 (ER3) locker 2 location to resume science gathering. It was temporarily relocated to support the Columbus Water On-Off Valve-8 (WOOV-8) recovery activities. The capability of ALTEA to measure the linear energy transfer (LET) of protons and helium and the kinetic energy of protons and heavy ions is to be upgraded by the addition of a new time of flight (TOF) system detector called LIDAL. LIDAL upgrades the ability of ALTEA to make measurements that can be converted, by dedicated software in real-time, into radiation risk coefficients - effectively enabling ALTEA to become the first ever dosimetric (risk meter) aboard the ISS.

Myotones: The crew performed skin marking on the designated experiment target areas, took measurements using the Myotones device, and performed ultrasound scans of the target areas using the Echo device. The Muscle Tone in Space (Myotones) investigation observes the biochemical properties of muscles (e.g. muscle tone, stiffness, elasticity) during long-term exposure spaceflight environment. Results from this investigation can provide a better understanding of the principles of human resting muscle tone. This could lead to the development of new strategies for alternative treatments for rehabilitation on Earth, as well as for future space missions.

Nutrition Monitoring for the International Space Station (NutrISS): The crew answered an experiment questionnaire, and then performed a bioelectrical impedance analysis measurement experiment session. Long-duration spaceflight induces relevant changes in body composition and a loss of body mass. In the NutrISS investigation, a periodic assessment of body composition (body weight, fat mass, and fat-free mass) during spaceflight aboard the ISS is carried out using a dedicated bio-impedance analysis device to allow for the measurement of long-term energy balance modification over time. On the basis of this data, it is hypothesized that an adjusted diet maintaining a near-neutral energy balance, and/or increasing protein intake can limit microgravity-induced bone and muscle loss of crew members.

Plant Habitat Facility: To prepare for the next experiment (Plant Habitat-05), the crew replaced the CO2 scrubber and ethylene (CH2=CH2) scrubber systems. They also replaced two CO2 bottles, and the inlet and outlet filters for the environmental control system. The Advanced Plant Habitat (Plant Habitat) is a fully automated facility that is used to conduct plant bioscience research on the ISS. It occupies the lower half of the EXPRESS Rack and one powered International Subrack Interface Standard (ISIS) drawer, providing a large, enclosed, environmentally controlled chamber.

Sleep Monitoring in Space with Dry-EEG Headband (DREAMS): Following the completion of the over-night session, the crew removed the DREAMS headband, transferred the data, and stowed the hardware. Sleep plays a major role in human health and well-being. Insufficient sleep, or sleep disorders can increase the risk of developing medical conditions, such as cardiovascular diseases, and can impair task performance. DREAMS is a technology demonstration investigation that utilizes the Dry-EEG Headband: an effective, affordable, and comfortable solution to monitor astronaut sleep quality during long-duration spaceflight aboard the ISS.

Systems:

In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Air Filter and Wring Collector Remove and Replace (R&R): Today, the crew R&Red the WHC Wring Collector and Air Filter as part of the WHC preventive maintenance replacement cycle. The Wring Collector is used in case any liquid gets downstream of either the solid waste collector or the pump separator, and needs to be replaced after one year. The WHC was unavailable for use during maintenance.

IFM Filter and Ventilation Cleaning Activities: Today, the crew completed several IFM activities related to ventilation cleaning. The crew inspected and cleaned Node 3 HEPA and Charcoal Filters and Area Smoke Detectors using the Vacuum Cleaner. The Integrated HEPA and Charcoal Assembly scrubs volatile siloxanes from the air. The third activity was cleaning of the PMA1 Intermodule Ventilation (IMV) Cone Screen at the PMA1/Node 1 Bulkhead. The IMV fan is used on the ISS to force airflow from one module to another through a series of ducting and control valves. Finally, crew completed inspection and cleaning of Node 2 HEPA and Charcoal Filters and Smoke Detectors.

Completed Task List Activities:

None
Today's Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

PPS HIGH BETA OPERATIONS
Drain of EDV to BPA Using UTS
Initiate a Brine Processor Dewatering Cycle
Crew Dragon System Checkout
EHS Rad Detector Look Up Table Commanding
JEM MAXI File Uplink before next MAXI-SCHEDULE-UPDT
VDS EHDC survey of Soyuz before undock
Look Ahead Plan

Thursday, December 16 (GMT 350)
Payloads:

Cold Atom Lab CPU Card replace
DREAMS
Food Acceptability
FSL ESEM bridge install and removal
InSPACE-4 runs 91-93
ISS HAM Pass
JEM KIBO Studio setup and event
ManD print removal
MELFI icebrick insert
Payload NAS HD replacement
Plasma Kristall-4 HD exchange
Repository Urine and saliva collect
Standard Measures PostSleep and Presleep
Touching Surfaces ops
Vascular Aging Echo scans, BP measurements and glucose setup
Systems:

ISS Photos of high Impact Areas for SpX-24
Swap SSC 10 and 20 Swap
JEM Space Fight Participants Event Attendance
EVA Battery Operations
THC IMV Flow Measurement Survey
New PWS1 Laptop installation
BIOS Setup on Portable Work Station 1
Portable Workstation 1 Activation
OBT ROBoT T&C Self Study
Payloads NAS HDD Replace
IMS Conference
Friday, December 17 (GMT 351)
Payloads:

EasyMotion/CEVIS
Food Physiology Diet Brief
FSL SMD SCU exchange and Harness reconfig
GLACIER-2 desiccant swap
InSPACE-4 runs 94-95
JWRS Sample collect
MELFI1 icebrick insert 6
Repository Saliva, blood and urine collect
Standard Measures Postsleep
Vascular Aging blood collect and Glucose reading
Systems:

Water Recovery System CWC-Iodine Fill Initialization
SpaceX-24 Dragon Review/Vehicle Ops/Rendezvous CBT
EHS - CSA-CP Extended Maintenance
EVA SLE Training
EDAR Removal
EVA HECA Cable Removal
ECLS PEPS Audit
Handover of Increment 66 Crew
Saturday, December 18 (GMT 352)
Payloads:

EasyMotion suit stow
JAXA PCG
Systems:

Crew Off-Duty Day
Today's Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

HRF Generic MELFI Sample Retrieval and Insertion Operations
Dreams Dry-EEG Headband doffing after recording
Dreams Dry-EEG Headband charge
NUTRISS MO8 Questionnaire
Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Measurement
Body Mass Measurement - BMMD
Standard Measures Post-sleep Questionnaire
COLUMBUS Bay 1, 2, 3 clean-up
In Flight Maintenance HEPA and Charcoal Filter and Smoke Detector Cleaning - NOD3D3
Myotones Kit Gathering
Echo Unit Setup for Myotones experiment
Video recording in USOS (Cupola). Photos from Earth
Myotones Ultrasound scan using Echo Unit
Video recording in USOS (Cupola). Santa video
Forward International Docking Adapter Multi Layer Insulation Re-seat
Myotones Measurements
In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Air Filter and Wring Collector Remove and Replace
Plant Habitat Dual MWA Preparation
Plant Habitat Facility Prep A
Echo Unit Stowage
PMA1 Intermodule Ventilation (IMV) Cone Screen Cleaning
JEM Mesh Cover Return Grille Cleaning
EasyMotion Power Box charge
Initiating Brine Transfer from EDV to BPA with UTS
In Flight Maintenance Node 2 HEPA and Charcoal Filters and Smoke Detector Inspection and Cleaning
INSPACE-4 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 4) Experiment Run Conclude
Gather and apply RFID tag to personal iPad
INSPACE-4 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 4) Experiment Run Ops
Photo/TV Node2 Camcorder #2 Troubleshooting
MERLIN 5 Desiccant Swap
Health Maintenance System (HMS) ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
Bio-Monitor Hardware Stow
Plant Habitat Facility Prep B
Terminating Brine Transfer from EDV to BPA with UTS
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event - Lab
Light Ions Detector Relocate 2
Myotones Device Data Transfer
Echo Unit Partial Stowage
[deferred] ECLSS Cargo Bag Transfer Audit
MELFI 1 Ice Brick Insert 4
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Glove Photos
COLUMBUS Bay 1, 2, 3 restow
Urine Transfer System Offload EDV Swap
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in JEM
EasyMotion Suit stow
Standard Measures Pre-sleep Questionnaire
HRF Generic Saliva Collection 10 Minutes

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