NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 February 2017 - Russian Progress 66 Launched

The Russian Progress 66 launched at 12:58 a.m. Wednesday (11:58 a.m. Baikonur time) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Credit: ROSCOSMOS.

The unpiloted Russian Progress 66 launched at 12:58 a.m. Wednesday (11:58 a.m. Baikonur time) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. It is now orbiting the planet on course for the International Space Station.

The vehicle will deliver almost three tons of food, fuel and supplies to the Expedition 50 crew.

The spacecraft is set to dock to the Pirs docking compartment at 3:34 a.m. Friday, Feb. 24. NASA TV coverage of rendezvous and docking will begin at 2:45 a.m. Progress 66 will remain docked at the station for almost four months before departing in June for its deorbit into Earth's atmosphere.

This was the first launch of a Progress cargo ship from Baikonur since the Progress 65 supply craft was lost Dec. 1, 2016.

On-Orbit Status Report

Preparation for Dragon Arrival: Dragon successfully lifted off on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center, Florida Sunday 19-February at 8:39 am CST. Today Dragon will continue to phase towards the ISS for a planned capture on Wednesday 22-February at approximately 5:00 am CST. Onboard the ISS the USOS crew participated in a Dragon cargo transfer conference with ground specialist.

Miniature Exercise Device (MED-2): The crew was unable to locate the one-of-a-kind power cable and stood down from MED-2 technical evaluation operations while ground teams investigated the potential locations. The crew was able to provide input for potential placement of cameras for future MED-2 exercise investigations. The microgravity environment of space weakens muscle and bone, so orbiting crew members spend significant amounts of time exercising. The ISS's exercise equipment is large and bulky, while the MED-2 aims to demonstrate small robotic actuators can provide motion and resistance for crew workout sessions, reducing the size and weight of exercise equipment for long-duration space missions. The MED-2 investigation is a system to test key technologies needed to develop space based exercise equipment that may provide appropriate countermeasures to the adverse effects of microgravity. This technology is critical for the initial design and development of second and third generation Counter Measure Systems (CMS) hardware that is an order of magnitude lighter and smaller than existing ISS class of CMS hardware and that has significantly greater reliability.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Tag Installation and Calibration: Last week the crew installed the RFID antennas around the hatchways of the US Lab, Node 1 and Node 2, which are continuously scanning to measure the RFID tags that are transported through the hatchways and modules. Today the crew installed 16 marker tags in each the US Lab, Node 1 and Node 2 in a roughly uniform distribution throughout the module. The crew then performed a calibration by attaching an RFID tag to a video camera. They then translated through the three modules at different rates of speed. Ground teams will then take the time-tagged video data and RFID collected data to calibrate the antennas. The RFID Logistics experiment aims to utilize RFID enabled tags on hardware throughout the ISS, and assist in the tracking of the hardware as it is moved around the station.

Combustion Integration Rack (CIR) Camera Cover Removal: The crew translated and rotated the CIR Optics Bench in order to access the Intensified Camera Package. They uninstalled the camera at Universal Mounting Location-2 (UML-2) at the back of the Optics Bench and removed the CIR Soft Window cover. The Intensified Camera Package was reinstalled and Optics Bench rotated back into position. During a ground checkout on February 10, teams were unable to complete a calibration of the camera packages for the Cool Flames Experiment. After investigation by ground specialists it was determined that the Window Cover was still attached. Teams will resume checkout and calibration activities of thee CIR for the Cool Flames experiment following today's completed activities. The Cool Flames Investigation will provide new insight into the phenomenon where some types of fuels initially burn very hot, then appear to go out -- but they continue burning at a much lower temperature, with no visible flames (cool flames). Understanding cool flame combustion helps scientists develop new engines and fuels that are more efficient and less harmful to the environment.

Microgravity Science Laboratory (MSL) Sample Cartridge Assembly (SCA) Exchange: The crew changed out the SCA in the Solidification Quenching Furnace (SQF), removing the calibration cartridge and inserting the first test sample. Ground teams will initiate the runs next week. The Batch-2b of the Materials Science Laboratory Sample Cartridge Assemblies serves two projects investigating how different phases organize in a structure when metallic alloys are solidified. The project Metastable Solidification of Composites (METCOMP) studies the phase formed by the reaction of the remaining liquid phase with an already formed solid, to form a second solid phase on cooling. For this purpose, Bronze (Copper-Tin Alloys) of different compositions will be processed. The other project, Solidification along a Eutectic path in Ternary Alloys (SETA), looks at how two phases that form together organize into lamellar, or fiber, structures when cooling Aluminum (Copper-Silver Alloys). Both projects will provide benchmark samples that will enable to test numerical models that aim to predict these structures.

Lighting Effects Vision Test: The crew performed a Visual Performance Test in which they configured the Solid State Lighting Assembly (SSLA) in their Crew Quarters (CQ) to the correct mode, turning off all other light sources, then performed one Numerical Verification Test and one Color Discrimination Test. The Lighting Effects investigation studies the impact of the change from fluorescent light bulbs to solid-state light-emitting diodes (LEDs) with adjustable intensity and color and aims to determine if the new lights can improve crew circadian rhythms, sleep, and cognitive performance.

Microscope Setup: In support of the Microgravity Expanded Stem Cells (MESC) payload to be delivered by SpX-10 the crew configured a microscope outside the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG). MESC will aid researches determine the efficiency of using a microgravity environment to accelerate expansion (replication) of stem cells for use in terrestrial clinical trials for treatment of disease.

Haptics-2: During today's Haptics-2 experiment the 1-Degree of Freedom (1-DOF) joystick failed. No resistance was felt when moving the handle without pressing the yellow activation button. When the crew pressed the activation button and moved the joystick an off-nominal mechanical/electrical sound was heard, suggesting a possible mechanical failure. Teams decided to stand down for operations and downlink the log files to investigate the issue. Haptics-2 is a technology demonstration experiment aimed at validating control interactions to take place between space and ground. In particular, this experiment allows for an astronaut crew in space to control, in real-time, robotic assets on Earth, using force feedback. The operational experience gained from Haptics-2 could be vital for future exploration missions beyond Earth orbit, where astronauts would be able to control robotic assets to maximize scientific operations on Mars, asteroids, and other exploration targets.

Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Urine Receptacle (UR) Routine Maintenance: The crew performed a change out of the WHC UR and insert filter. After replacement, a functionality test of the WHC was successfully performed.

Advanced Resistive Exercise Device (ARED) Rope Replace: As part of routine maintenance, the crew replaced both ARED cable arm ropes.

Today's Planned Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.

HEMATOKRIT. Determining hematokrit number
HEMATOKRIT Equipment Stowage
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis
EML High Speed Camera Lens Switch
ESA Monthly Management Conference
MERLIN 2 Desiccant Swap
MOTOCARD. Experiment Ops
Lighting Effects Visual Performance Tests Light Setting - Subject
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Hardware Gather
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation Node 1
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation in US Lab
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation in Node2
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Calibration Test
Miniature Exercise Device Hardware Checkout [Paused]
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Open
ISS HAM Video Power Down
Haptics-2 Setup for Operations
Combustion Integrated Rack Optics Bench Translation Out
RELAXATSIYA. Hardware setup.
Combustion Integrated Rack Camera Cover Removal
Haptics-2 Protocol B Operations
RELAXATSIYA. Parameter settings.
Ambient micro-ecosphere monitoring. Register results per Habitat 2 (Т0+7days) and downlink
RELAXATSIYA. Observation.Preparation for Dragon Arrival: Dragon successfully lifted off on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center, Florida Sunday 19-February at 8:39 am CST. Today Dragon will continue to phase towards the ISS for a planned capture on Wednesday 22-February at approximately 5:00 am CST. Onboard the ISS the USOS crew participated in a Dragon cargo transfer conference with ground specialist.

Miniature Exercise Device (MED-2): The crew was unable to locate the one-of-a-kind power cable and stood down from MED-2 technical evaluation operations while ground teams investigated the potential locations. The crew was able to provide input for potential placement of cameras for future MED-2 exercise investigations. The microgravity environment of space weakens muscle and bone, so orbiting crew members spend significant amounts of time exercising. The ISS's exercise equipment is large and bulky, while the MED-2 aims to demonstrate small robotic actuators can provide motion and resistance for crew workout sessions, reducing the size and weight of exercise equipment for long-duration space missions. The MED-2 investigation is a system to test key technologies needed to develop space based exercise equipment that may provide appropriate countermeasures to the adverse effects of microgravity. This technology is critical for the initial design and development of second and third generation Counter Measure Systems (CMS) hardware that is an order of magnitude lighter and smaller than existing ISS class of CMS hardware and that has significantly greater reliability.

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Tag Installation and Calibration: Last week the crew installed the RFID antennas around the hatchways of the US Lab, Node 1 and Node 2, which are continuously scanning to measure the RFID tags that are transported through the hatchways and modules. Today the crew installed 16 marker tags in each the US Lab, Node 1 and Node 2 in a roughly uniform distribution throughout the module. The crew then performed a calibration by attaching an RFID tag to a video camera. They then translated through the three modules at different rates of speed. Ground teams will then take the time-tagged video data and RFID collected data to calibrate the antennas. The RFID Logistics experiment aims to utilize RFID enabled tags on hardware throughout the ISS, and assist in the tracking of the hardware as it is moved around the station.

Combustion Integration Rack (CIR) Camera Cover Removal: The crew translated and rotated the CIR Optics Bench in order to access the Intensified Camera Package. They uninstalled the camera at Universal Mounting Location-2 (UML-2) at the back of the Optics Bench and removed the CIR Soft Window cover. The Intensified Camera Package was reinstalled and Optics Bench rotated back into position. During a ground checkout on February 10, teams were unable to complete a calibration of the camera packages for the Cool Flames Experiment. After investigation by ground specialists it was determined that the Window Cover was still attached. Teams will resume checkout and calibration activities of thee CIR for the Cool Flames experiment following today's completed activities. The Cool Flames Investigation will provide new insight into the phenomenon where some types of fuels initially burn very hot, then appear to go out -- but they continue burning at a much lower temperature, with no visible flames (cool flames). Understanding cool flame combustion helps scientists develop new engines and fuels that are more efficient and less harmful to the environment.

Microgravity Science Laboratory (MSL) Sample Cartridge Assembly (SCA) Exchange: The crew changed out the SCA in the Solidification Quenching Furnace (SQF), removing the calibration cartridge and inserting the first test sample. Ground teams will initiate the runs next week. The Batch-2b of the Materials Science Laboratory Sample Cartridge Assemblies serves two projects investigating how different phases organize in a structure when metallic alloys are solidified. The project Metastable Solidification of Composites (METCOMP) studies the phase formed by the reaction of the remaining liquid phase with an already formed solid, to form a second solid phase on cooling. For this purpose, Bronze (Copper-Tin Alloys) of different compositions will be processed. The other project, Solidification along a Eutectic path in Ternary Alloys (SETA), looks at how two phases that form together organize into lamellar, or fiber, structures when cooling Aluminum (Copper-Silver Alloys). Both projects will provide benchmark samples that will enable to test numerical models that aim to predict these structures.

Lighting Effects Vision Test: The crew performed a Visual Performance Test in which they configured the Solid State Lighting Assembly (SSLA) in their Crew Quarters (CQ) to the correct mode, turning off all other light sources, then performed one Numerical Verification Test and one Color Discrimination Test. The Lighting Effects investigation studies the impact of the change from fluorescent light bulbs to solid-state light-emitting diodes (LEDs) with adjustable intensity and color and aims to determine if the new lights can improve crew circadian rhythms, sleep, and cognitive performance.

Microscope Setup: In support of the Microgravity Expanded Stem Cells (MESC) payload to be delivered by SpX-10 the crew configured a microscope outside the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG). MESC will aid researches determine the efficiency of using a microgravity environment to accelerate expansion (replication) of stem cells for use in terrestrial clinical trials for treatment of disease.

Haptics-2: During today's Haptics-2 experiment the 1-Degree of Freedom (1-DOF) joystick failed. No resistance was felt when moving the handle without pressing the yellow activation button. When the crew pressed the activation button and moved the joystick an off-nominal mechanical/electrical sound was heard, suggesting a possible mechanical failure. Teams decided to stand down for operations and downlink the log files to investigate the issue. Haptics-2 is a technology demonstration experiment aimed at validating control interactions to take place between space and ground. In particular, this experiment allows for an astronaut crew in space to control, in real-time, robotic assets on Earth, using force feedback. The operational experience gained from Haptics-2 could be vital for future exploration missions beyond Earth orbit, where astronauts would be able to control robotic assets to maximize scientific operations on Mars, asteroids, and other exploration targets.

Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Urine Receptacle (UR) Routine Maintenance: The crew performed a change out of the WHC UR and insert filter. After replacement, a functionality test of the WHC was successfully performed.

Advanced Resistive Exercise Device (ARED) Rope Replace: As part of routine maintenance, the crew replaced both ARED cable arm ropes.

Today's Planned Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.

HEMATOKRIT. Determining hematokrit number
HEMATOKRIT Equipment Stowage
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis
EML High Speed Camera Lens Switch
ESA Monthly Management Conference
MERLIN 2 Desiccant Swap
MOTOCARD. Experiment Ops
Lighting Effects Visual Performance Tests Light Setting - Subject
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Hardware Gather
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation Node 1
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation in US Lab
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Marker Tag Installation in Node2
Radio Frequency Identification Logistics Calibration Test
Miniature Exercise Device Hardware Checkout [Paused]
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Open
ISS HAM Video Power Down
Haptics-2 Setup for Operations
Combustion Integrated Rack Optics Bench Translation Out
RELAXATSIYA. Hardware setup.
Combustion Integrated Rack Camera Cover Removal
Haptics-2 Protocol B Operations
RELAXATSIYA. Parameter settings.
Ambient micro-ecosphere monitoring. Register results per Habitat 2 (Т0+7days) and downlink
RELAXATSIYA. Observation.
Combustion Integrated Rack Optics Bench Translation In
RELAXATSIYA. Closeout Ops and Teardown
HAPTICS-2 Stow
Miniature Exercise Device Hardware Gather
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Close
Regenerative Environmental Control and Life Support System (RGN) Wastewater Storage Tank Assembly (WSTA) Fill
Dragon Cargo Operations Conference
BIMS. Experiment Ops. Tagup with specialists
Miniature Exercise Device Camera Placement
PFS Gas Delivery System Portable PFS Photography
Ghost camera setup in Cupola
Microscope Hardware Setup for MESC
MOTOCARD. Experiment Ops
ISS HAM Video Power Up
MOTOCARD. Assistance during the experiment
Material Science Laboratory SCA Exchange2B #6
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Sample Data Record
Habitability Human Factors Directed Observations - Subject
Multi Omics FOS Stow
RELAXATSIYA. Battery Charging for RELAXATSIYA Experiment (init)

Completed Task List Items
KTO Replaced when full.
Crew Medical Officer (CMO) Proficiency Training [Completed Monday]
Expedition New Earth Video-PROXIMITY [Completed Monday]
Expedition New Earth Video-RESUPPLY [Completed Monday]
Gather Tools for Inc 50 EVAs [Completed Monday]
JLP Cleanup [Completed Monday]
Replace the failed LAB1OP5 LHA with a light (SSLA). [Completed Monday]
Crew Evaluation of New Food Items [Completed Monday]
Dragon Cargo Operations Review [Completed Monday]
Columbus Meteron Laptops Stowage [Completed Sunday]
Extra Vehicular Activity EMU Resize [Completed Sunday]
Google Street View Columbus Photo Operations [Completed Sunday]
Google Street View LAB Photo Operations [Completed Sunday]
LAB BYPASS DUCT INSPECTION [Completed Sunday]
WHC URINE RECEPTACLE RESISTANCE TEST [Completed Sunday]
Treadmill 2 (T2) Quarterly Maintenance [Completed Saturday]
ISS FIT and iPad Troubleshooting [Completed Saturday]
Node 3 Nadir Hatch Seal Inspection [Completed Saturday]
RFID Node 2 Hardware Relocate [Completed Saturday]

Ground Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.
N3 MCA Full Calibration
CUCU Broadcast Test
S-Band string 2 activation
Node 2 CBM Prep for Mate
Node 2 Nadir ACBM Inspection

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Wednesday, 02/22: 66Progress Launch, Dragon capture and berthing, Dragon/N2 Vestibule outfitting, Node 2 CPA Removal, ARED Arm Cable Replace
Thursday, 02/23: Dragon Ingress, Dragon Center Stack transfer, Double Cold Bag unpack, SABLE CO2 Incubator Install, TangoLab-1 card replace, MERLIN3 install, Polar 1 transfer and install, Glacier 3 transfer and install, MESC first microscope ops,
Friday, 02/24: 66P Dock, 66P ingress, 66P transfer operations, RR-4 transfer, JEMAL depress

QUICK ISS Status - Environmental Control Group:
Component - Status
Elektron - On
Vozdukh - Manual
[СКВ] 1 - SM Air Conditioner System ("SKV1") - Off
[СКВ] 2 - SM Air Conditioner System ("SKV2") - On
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Lab - Standby
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Node 3 - Operate
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Lab - Operate
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Node 3 - Standby
Oxygen Generation Assembly (OGA) - Process
Urine Processing Assembly (UPA) - Process
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Lab - Off
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Node 3 - Full Up
Combustion Integrated Rack Optics Bench Translation In
RELAXATSIYA. Closeout Ops and Teardown
HAPTICS-2 Stow
Miniature Exercise Device Hardware Gather
Combustion Integrated Rack Rack Doors Close
Regenerative Environmental Control and Life Support System (RGN) Wastewater Storage Tank Assembly (WSTA) Fill
Dragon Cargo Operations Conference
BIMS. Experiment Ops. Tagup with specialists
Miniature Exercise Device Camera Placement
PFS Gas Delivery System Portable PFS Photography
Ghost camera setup in Cupola
Microscope Hardware Setup for MESC
MOTOCARD. Experiment Ops
ISS HAM Video Power Up
MOTOCARD. Assistance during the experiment
Material Science Laboratory SCA Exchange2B #6
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Sample Data Record
Habitability Human Factors Directed Observations - Subject
Multi Omics FOS Stow
RELAXATSIYA. Battery Charging for RELAXATSIYA Experiment (init)

Completed Task List Items
KTO Replaced when full.
Crew Medical Officer (CMO) Proficiency Training [Completed Monday]
Expedition New Earth Video-PROXIMITY [Completed Monday]
Expedition New Earth Video-RESUPPLY [Completed Monday]
Gather Tools for Inc 50 EVAs [Completed Monday]
JLP Cleanup [Completed Monday]
Replace the failed LAB1OP5 LHA with a light (SSLA). [Completed Monday]
Crew Evaluation of New Food Items [Completed Monday]
Dragon Cargo Operations Review [Completed Monday]
Columbus Meteron Laptops Stowage [Completed Sunday]
Extra Vehicular Activity EMU Resize [Completed Sunday]
Google Street View Columbus Photo Operations [Completed Sunday]
Google Street View LAB Photo Operations [Completed Sunday]
LAB BYPASS DUCT INSPECTION [Completed Sunday]
WHC URINE RECEPTACLE RESISTANCE TEST [Completed Sunday]
Treadmill 2 (T2) Quarterly Maintenance [Completed Saturday]
ISS FIT and iPad Troubleshooting [Completed Saturday]
Node 3 Nadir Hatch Seal Inspection [Completed Saturday]
RFID Node 2 Hardware Relocate [Completed Saturday]

Ground Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.
N3 MCA Full Calibration
CUCU Broadcast Test
S-Band string 2 activation
Node 2 CBM Prep for Mate
Node 2 Nadir ACBM Inspection

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Wednesday, 02/22: 66Progress Launch, Dragon capture and berthing, Dragon/N2 Vestibule outfitting, Node 2 CPA Removal, ARED Arm Cable Replace
Thursday, 02/23: Dragon Ingress, Dragon Center Stack transfer, Double Cold Bag unpack, SABLE CO2 Incubator Install, TangoLab-1 card replace, MERLIN3 install, Polar 1 transfer and install, Glacier 3 transfer and install, MESC first microscope ops,
Friday, 02/24: 66P Dock, 66P ingress, 66P transfer operations, RR-4 transfer, JEMAL depress

QUICK ISS Status - Environmental Control Group:
Component - Status
Elektron - On
Vozdukh - Manual
[СКВ] 1 - SM Air Conditioner System ("SKV1") - Off
[СКВ] 2 - SM Air Conditioner System ("SKV2") - On
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Lab - Standby
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Node 3 - Operate
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Lab - Operate
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Node 3 - Standby
Oxygen Generation Assembly (OGA) - Process
Urine Processing Assembly (UPA) - Process
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Lab - Off
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Node 3 - Full Up

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