NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 30 January 2020 - Installation of SlingShot Deployer

NASA astronauts (from left) Christina Koch, Jessica Meir and Andrew Morgan peer through the International Space Station's "window to the world," the cupola. The trio were on robotics duty monitoring the arrival and capture of the Cygnus space freighter from Northrop Grumman.. Credit: NASA. (Nov. 4, 2019)

Cardiology, combustion and CubeSats filled Thursday's research schedule as three Expedition 61 crewmates are one week away from returning to Earth.

The Cygnus space freighter is also poised to depart the International Space Station on Friday and complete one more mission.

NASA astronaut Christina Koch is nearing the end of her 328-day mission aboard the orbiting lab. She will land in Kazakhstan Feb. 6 aboard the Soyuz MS-13 crew ship with Alexander Skvortsov of Roscosmos and Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency). Koch blasted off to join the station crew on March 14 while Skvortsov and Parmitano began their mission on July 20.

When Koch lands, her mission-stay will be the second longest single spaceflight by a U.S. astronaut behind former astronaut Scott Kelly. He lived aboard the station for 340 continuous days.

NASA Flight Engineer Andrew Morgan juggled a pair of experiments this morning. He ran the Hourglass study observing how simulated planetary materials behave during different gravity conditions. Next, he cleaned a furnace that exposes materials to high temperatures and levitates them to research their thermophysical properties.

Parmitano started his day on cardiology research before switching to fire safety studies. The station commander first scanned portions of his body with an ultrasound device. The biomedical study is helping doctors understand what happens to the heart and blood vessels in space. He then moved on and burned a variety of fabric and acrylic samples. Scientists are using the data to model how flames spread in space to improve fire safety procedures and products in space and on Earth.

The Cygnus space freighter is packed, closed and ready for one more mission after its robotic release from the Canadarm2 Friday at 9:35 a.m. EST. It will deploy eight CubeSats for communications and atmospheric research several hours after departing the orbiting lab. Flight Engineer Jessica Meir installed the CubeSats, packed inside the SlingShot small satellite deployer, on Cygnus' hatch Thursday afternoon.

On-Orbit Status Report

Electro-static Levitation Furnace (ELF): The crew removed and cleaned sample cartridge #3 from the ELF and installed a new sample cartridge. The ground then initiated an experiment run. ELF is an experimental facility designed to levitate, melt and solidify materials by containerless processing techniques using the electrostatic levitation method. With this facility thermophysical properties of high temperature melts can be measured and solidification from deeply undercooled melts can be achieved.

Confined Combustion: The crew continued the experiment using an acrylic sample with a combination of black and transparent baffles to ignite and observe combustion results. This project aims to study flame spread in confined spaces--specifically the interactions between spreading flames and surrounding walls. Flame spread in confined spaces (such as buildings and vehicles) may pose a more serious fire hazard than flame spread in open spaces because of acceleration caused by radiative heat feedback from the surrounding walls and a tunnel flow acceleration effect. However, several aspects of flame spread are difficult to study in normal gravity conditions. Gravity-driven buoyancy flow complicates the fire growth process and prohibits a fundamental understanding of the underlying physics. However, in microgravity, buoyancy is eliminated, allowing scientists to better study the physics of flame spread.

SlingShot: The crew completed the installation of the SlingShot Deployer onto the closed Cygnus hatch prior to Cygnus release. The Satellites will be deployed after the Cygnus is released from the ISS. Deployment is scheduled for GMT 032. SEOPS' SlingShot is a small satellite deployment system that fits inside the Cygnus spacecraft's Passive Common Berthing Mechanism (PCBM). SlingShot can accommodate up to 18 satellites that are deployed post Cygnus unberth.

Hourglass: The crew installed the Hourglass box into the CBEF 1g Centrifuge and the ground initiated an experiment run. The Hourglass investigation examines the relationship between gravity and the behavior of granular materials such as regolith that covers the surface of planets and planetary-like bodies. Researchers observe various granular materials inside an hourglass and a measuring cylinder under different gravity conditions. Better understanding of the behavior of these materials supports the design of spacecraft for future missions landing on the surfaces of planets and other celestial bodies.

Vascular Aging: The crew completed right leg femoral artery ultrasound scans and Blood Pressure measurements in support of the Vascular Aging Experiment. Emerging data point towards linkages among cardiovascular health risk, carotid artery aging, bone metabolism and blood biomarkers, insulin resistance, and radiation. Data indicate 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.

Systems:

Northrop Grumman 12 (NG-12) Departure Preparation: Today, the crew closed the Cygnus hatch, installed the starboard and port Controller Panel Assemblies (CPAs), re-installed the Node 1 Nadir thermal cover and closed the Node 1 Nadir hatch. The crew then completed the Pressure Management Device (PMD) setup for the N1n vestibule depress tomorrow morning. Cygnus unberth is scheduled for tomorrow morning with release at 14:35 GMT (8:35 AM CT).

Completed Task List Activities:
OPTIMIS Tablet Troubleshooting
Cygnus Cargo Ops

Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
Payload operations support
Cygnus departure support

Friday, 1/31 (GMT 031)
Payloads:
Vascular Echo Leg Doppler scan (CSA)
DOSIS-3D passive detectors de-install (10 PDP and 1 TDP) (ESA)
HOURGLASS removal from CBEF (JAXA)
LSG Work Volume Illumination Trouble shoot (NASA)
CYCLOPS hardware JEM table retract and stow (NASA)
CBEF Disinfect prep and Humidifier 2 installation (JAXA)
JEMAL Slide Table retract and Cyclops hardware stow (NASA-JAXA)
Food Acceptability Survey (NASA)
VEGGIE Monitoring Review and surface Sample collect Photo (NASA)
MIS-RECYCLER Trouble Shooting (NASA)
CAL Fiber Inspection closeout (NASA)

Systems:
59S Crew Departure Preparations
Cygnus Command Link Verification
Cygnus Release Command and Monitoring
N1 Nadir VOK Stow
PMD Teardown

Saturday, 2/1 (GMT 032) Crew Off-Duty
Payloads:
CIMON procedure review, unstow, battery charge and soundcam chk (ESA)
Probiotics Fecal collect (JAXA)
HRF Saliva setup (NASA)

Systems:
59S Crew Departure Preparations
Portable Computer System (PCS) Connect
ISS Housekeeping

Sunday, 2/2 (GMT 033) Crew Off-Duty
Payloads:
CIMON commissioning and Mood detect (ESA)
HRF Saliva collect (NASA
Vascular Aging Bio Monitor review (CSA)
LIDAL Orientation chk (NASA)
BioMonitor H/W setup (ESA)

Systems:
59S Hero-3 charging start/end

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

Standard Measures Post-sleep Questionnaire
Reminder Max CEVIS Exercise E-1
HRF Generic Saliva Collection 10 Minutes
Reminder HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection
HRF Generic MELFI Sample Retrieval And Insertion Operations
Reminder Probiotics Intake
Reminder Probiotics Operations
Reminder 2 Vascular Aging Resting Ultrasound Scan
Reminder 1 Vascular Echo Leg Doppler Measurement
HRF Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection OPS
Hourglass Box installation to Cell Biology Experiment Facility (CBEF)
HRF Generic MELFI Sample Insertion
Cygnus Egress
Recharging Soyuz 746 Samsung PC after OBT, start recharge
PROBIOVIT. Glovebox-S Removal
Setup and Activation of Crew Onboard Support Kit (КСПЭ) Equipment for mpeg2 TV coverage of Wide Band Communication System (ШСС) Test
Locking Collar visual inspection and Retrieving Sample Cartridge 3 from Electrostatic Levitation Furnace.
ISS Experience Hardware Stow
Remove Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) Controller Panel Assemblies (CPA) Removal
Gathering and connecting КСПЭ hardware to ШСС video server.
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) sample Cartridge Cleaning
HRF Generic Saliva Collection Stow
SlingShot BPW and Procedure Review 2
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Personal Medication Stow
Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) Controller Panel Assembly (CPA) Rotation and Closeout
Vascular Aging Resting Ultrasound Scan
Cygnus/Node 1 Vestibule Configuration for Demate - Part 1
BIOCARD. Operator Assistance During the Experiment
BIOCARD. Experiment Session.
SlingShot Bracket Installation
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) Sample Holder Exchange
Soyuz 746 Transfer Ops
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) sample Cartridge Installation
SlingShot Deployer Install
Vascular Aging CDL Holter Arterial BP Measurement
PROBIOVIT. Deactivation of ТБУ-В No.04. Transfer of Probiovit kits No.3 and No.4 from ТБУ-В No.04 to ТБУ-В No.07 for stowage. Photography
SEPARATION. Activation of [СРВ-У-РС] system. Starting distillation cycles.
Test comm sessions via Luch-5V Relay Satellite (95°) and 2-way audio/video comm check with ШСС video server АРМ.
Confined Combustion Test Operations
INTER-MAI-75. Hardware Setup And HAM Radio Activation.
Closeout ops after comm sessions via Luch-5V (95°) relay satellite.
Troubleshooting FGB Power Supply System Filter Units (БФ-1М) and Main Bus Assembly (БСШ-1М), Preparation
Node 1 Nadir CBM Control Panel Assembly (CPA) Installation
Vascular Aging Ultrasound Echo
Recharging Soyuz 746 Samsung PC after OBT, remove from charge
СОЖ Maintenance Verification of ИП-1 Flow Sensor Position
INTERACTION-2. Experiment Ops
Cygnus/Node 1 Vestibule Configuration for Demate - Part 2
ISS Crew departure preparation
Crew Departure Preparations for Return to Earth
Pressure Management Device
SEPARATION. Deactivation of [СРВ-У-РС] system. Log-file downlink.
SEPARATION. Collecting condensate (water) sample from ЕДВ-Д
Metal Oxide (METOX) Regeneration Termination
Metal Oxide (METOX) Regeneration Initiation
INTER-MAI-75. Equipment deactivation and cleanup
N1 Deck hatch MPEV open
Reminder 2 Vascular Echo Leg Doppler Measurement

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