NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 24 June, 2021 - Station Reboost Ahead of Friday's Spacewalk

©NASA

Spacewalkers Thomas Pesquet and Shane Kimbrough. (June 16, 2021)

Four Expedition 65 crew members spent Thursday preparing for the third spacewalk to continue new roll-out solar array installation work.

The other three International Space Station crew members continued with variety of space research.

Astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Thomas Pesquet are scheduled to exit the space station shortly after they set their U.S. spacesuits to battery power at 8 a.m. EDT on Friday. The veteran spacewalking duo will work about 6.5 hours to begin installing a second ISS Roll-Out Solar Array (iROSA) on the station's Port-6 truss structure.

Both astronauts set up their spacesuits then readied their tools inside the U.S. Quest airlock just before lunchtime today. Afterward, they joined NASA Flight Engineers Megan McArthur and Mark Vande Hei and reviewed the procedures and robotics activities planned for Friday's excursion. NASA TV will begin its live spacewalk coverage at 6:30 a.m. on both the agency's website and the NASA app.

Commander Akihiko Hoshide started his day swapping samples inside the Materials Science Laboratory. Those samples, such as metals, polymers and alloys, are exposed to high temperatures possibly leading to new applications or new materials on Earth and in space. The three-time station visitor also investigated how microgravity affects bacteria and ways to counteract harmful changes for the Oral Biofilms experiment.

In the Russian segment of the orbiting lab, Roscosmos Flight Engineers Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov partnered together and explored how long-term spaceflight impacts the blood circulation system. Novitskiy later worked in the Columbus laboratory module trapping clouds of particles for a plasma crystal experiment. Dubrov also researched piloting techniques that astronauts might use to maneuver future spacecraft and robots on planetary surfaces.

On-Orbit Status Report

ISS Reboost: Last night at 10:40 PM CT, the ISS performed a 7 minute and 25 second reboost using the DC-1 77P Mid-Ring thrusters resulting in a 0.5 m/s increase in ISS velocity. This reboost set up the phasing for 78P, Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM), and Boeing Starliner Orbital Flight Test-2 (OFT-2) rendezvous in the July timeframe.

Payloads

Actiwatch Plus (AWP): The crew set up the appropriate AWPs using a USB hub in preparation for ground commanding and battery charging. Once complete, the status of the watches was verified, and they were returned to the appropriate crewmembers. The Actiwatch is a waterproof, nonintrusive, sleep-wake activity monitor worn on the wrist of a crewmember. The device contains a miniature uniaxial accelerometer that produces a signal as the subject moves. The data are stored in nonvolatile memory within the Actiwatch until downloaded for analysis.

Artemis Hybrid Electronic Radiation Assessor (HERA) on Space Station (A-HoSS): The Artemis HERA hardware was powered up. A-HoSS demonstrates software to refine data analysis and operational products for future exploration missions. It modifies the HERA, built to operate as the primary radiation detection system for Orion and certified for flight on Artemis 2, to operate on the ISS. The investigation provides an opportunity to evaluate this hardware in the space radiation environment prior to the Artemis 2 flight.

Materials Science Lab Batch 3a-ESA (MSL SCA-Batch 3a-ESA) Columnar-to-Equiaxed Transition in Solidification Processing (CETSOL): The crew installed Sample Cartridge #2 and prepared the facility for a sample run. The Lid was not able to close properly so the run initiation was deferred for now as the ground teams assessed a trouble shooting plan. MSL SCA-Batch 3a-ESA serves two projects investigating how different phases organize in a structure when metallic alloys are solidified. The Microstructure Formation in Casting of Technical Alloys under Diffusive and Magnetically Controlled Convective Conditions (MICAST) experiment aims to deepen the understanding of the physical principles that govern solidification processes in metal alloys. The CETSOL experiment aims to deepen the understanding of the physical principles that govern solidification processes in metal alloys.

Oral Biofilms in Space (OBiS): The crew hydrated the OBiS Assembly session Packs 17-20 with fluid flow from Fluid Bag 1 into the Fluid Chamber for 30 minutes. The mixture was allowed to sit for 4 hours and then the fluid flow was reinitiated, and the session packs were stored for incubation for 20 hours. Fluid Bag 1 is a fluid medium containing chemicals designed to promote bacterial growth within the Fluid Chamber. Effect of Environmental Stressors on Oral Biofilm Growth and Treatment (Oral Biofilms in Space) studies the effect of gravity on the behavior of oral bacteria, including the structure of the bacterial community, and changes in bacterial response to common oral care agents. The findings could support development of novel treatments to fight oral diseases such as caries, gingivitis, and periodontitis. The investigation also could provide insights into how microgravity affects the microbiome of other mucosal surfaces in the body.

Plasma Krystall-4 (PK-4): The crew executed two Run 3 ops by catching clouds of particles inside the PK-4 chamber using the PK-4 Human Computer Interface (HCI) software on the EPM laptop. The crew also performed a gas supply exchange from Neon to Argon. PK-4 is a scientific collaboration between ESA and Roscosmos performing research in the field of "Complex Plasmas". Complex Plasmas are low temperature gaseous mixtures composed of ionized gas, neutral gas, and micron-sized particles. The micro-particles become highly charged in the plasma and interact strongly with each other, which can lead to a self-organized structure of the micro-particles, so-called plasma crystals. Experiments in the facility aim to study transport properties, thermodynamics, kinetics and statistical physics, non-linear waves, and instabilities in Complex Plasmas.

Systems

Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Preparations: The crew completed several activities in preparation for the ISS Roll-Out Solar Array (IROSA) 4B Install EVA. The crew terminated EVA battery charging, configured and audited EVA tools, installed High Definition Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Cameras (HECAs), reviewed robotics and EVA procedures, and participated in a conference with the ground. Finally, the crew completed final preparations to the Equipment Lock and EMUs 3009 and 3015 for the EVA. The IROSA 4B Install EVA is planned for tomorrow, June 25th and crew egress is expected at 7:05 AM CT.

Completed Task List Activities:

Systems Operations Data File EMER-1A Update
iPad Flight Group 11 Deploy
EVA GoPro Setup
Today's Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

EDV Fill Support
OGS Vacuum Pressure Sensor Trending
ISS Preparation Commanding for EVA (In Work)
LAB CDRA Activation & Node 3 CDRA Deactivation (In Work)
Look Ahead Plan

Friday, June 25 (GMT 176)
Payloads:

COSMIC Confocal Cable Reconnect and Check (JAXA)
OBiS Bag2 (17-20) Initiation (NASA)
Standard Measures Post-sleep (NASA)
AC Touch (NASA)
Systems:

IROSA 4B Install EVA
WHC UR/IF R&R
SpX-22 Cargo Operations
Saturday, June 26 (GMT 177)
Payloads:

APEX-07 Harvest (NASA)
OBiS Bag3 (17-20) Initiation (NASA)
PK-4 HD Pack and Closeout (Joint)
ISS HAM Pass (NASA)
SlingShot Control Box Install (NASA)
Systems:

EVA Debrief
EVA Recovery Activities
SpX-22 Cargo Operations
Sunday, June 27 (GMT 178)
Payloads:

Repository Urine and Blood Setup (NASA)
Systems:

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

EVA Helmet Interchangeable Portable (EHIP) Installation
EMU Helmet Light Velcro Restraint Installation
Artemis HERA Power on
EVA Battery Operations Terminal Terminate
EVA iPad Contingency Procedures preparation
Equipment Lock (E-LK) Preparation
Extravehicular Activity Pistol Grip Tool Battery Installation
Robotics Procedure Review
Material Science Laboratory SQF Exchange
EVA Tool Audit
EVA Tool Configuring
OBiS Assembly Hydration, Fluid Chamber Power Down & Power On, and Assemblies Insertion
EVA Procedure Review
Actiwatch Plus HRF Rack 1 Setup & Stow
Food Acceptability Survey
Health Maintenance System (HMS) ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
Atmosphere Control and Supply (ACS) Nitrogen Manual Valve Open
EVA Procedure Conference
Robotics Procedure Review Conference
Antimicrobial Coatings Touch
JPM Window Shutter Close
ISS HAM Kenwood Radio Power Down in Columbus
Standard Measures Pre-sleep Questionnaire

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