Space Stations

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 4 May 2015

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
May 5, 2015
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 4 May 2015
A dying sun turns the Earth gold with cities sparkling to match the stars that spread out from the International Space Station. NASA astronaut Terry Verts tweeted this wondrous image with the attached comment about the stars: " See those light clusters? (center sky left and right)They are Magellanic clouds, a duo of dwarf galaxies seen from the southern hemisphere". Credit: NASA.

Monday began a new week of science and maintenance work for the Expedition 43 crew.
NASA astronauts Terry Virts and Scott Kelly spent the day reviewing procedures and gathering equipment for an upcoming replacement activity with one of the station’s Carbon Dioxide Removal Assemblies (CDRA.) The CDRA system works to remove carbon dioxide from the cabin air, allowing for an environmentally safe crew cabin.

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti participated in the Skin-B experiment which will improve our understanding of skin aging, which is greatly accelerated in space, while also providing insight into the aging process of other similar bodily tissues. She also took photos for the Moon imagery study.

Robotics controllers in Houston continued operations with the Robotic Refueling Mission-2 (RRM-2) payload. Using the Canadarm2 robotic arm, to install the new task boards that will be used for the experiment. The objective of RRM-2 is to develop new technologies, tools and techniques that could eventually give satellite owners resources to diagnose problems on orbit and keep certain spacecraft instruments performing longer in space.

On-Orbit Status Report

Robotics Refueling Mission (RRM) Operations: Over the weekend, the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM) picked up Task Board 2 (TB2) and the Safety Cap Tool (SCT) from the RRM. The Mobile Transport (MT) was translated to Work Site (WS) 7 where the SPDM stowed TB2 and the Safety Cap Tool on the RRM On-orbit Transfer Cage (ROTC). The SPDM picked up TB4 and the VIPIR payload and the MT was translated to WS2. The SPDM installed TB4 on the RRM and performed a checkout of the Visual Inspection Poseable Invertebrate Robot (VIPIR). ROBOs stowed the VIPIR on the RRM and maneuver the SSRMS and SPDM to a park configuration. With this, the RRM Phase 2 Transfer operations will be complete. Task Board 2 was inspected by Virts today, and will be stowed on the Slide Table at a later date.

Rodent Research-2 Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (RR-2 CASIS): Kelly restocked and set up the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG) in preparation for the third RR-2 specimen processing session scheduled for the week of May 11. This research is to monitor the effects of the space environment on the musculoskeletal and neurological systems of mice as model organisms of human health and disease. Living in microgravity results in significant and rapid effects on the physiology of mice that mimic the process of aging and some diseases in humans on Earth, including muscle atrophy and the loss of bone mineral density. This project will help scientists to discover new molecular targets that can facilitate the development of novel therapeutics for the treatment of muscle and bone-related diseases. Long-duration exposure to microgravity will also induce changes in gene expression, protein synthesis, metabolism, and eye structure/morphology that will be identifiable as a series of assessable biomarkers for tracking the onset and progression of disease.

Moon Imagery: Cristoforetti took photographs of the full moon and downlinked files for ground evaluation. If a spacecraft loses communication with the ground or with NASA’s Deep Space Network, its crew must navigate just as ancient mariners did using the moon and stars. The moon Imagery investigation collects pictures of the moon from the ISS which are then used to calibrate navigation software to guide the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle in case its transponder-based navigation capability is lost. Crew members photograph the moon’s phases during one 29-day cycle, providing images of varying brightness to calibrate Orion’s camera software. Moon Imagery primary objectives must be completed by June 1, 2015 to support a key Orion Program design review.

Skin-B: Cristoforetti performed Corneometer (measuring the hydration level of the stratus coreum, or outer layer of the skin), Tewameter (skin barrier function measurement), and Visioscan (skin surface topography) measurements in support of the Skin-B experiment. The Skin-B investigation aims to improve the understanding of skin aging which is slow on Earth but greatly accelerated in space. This will also provide insights into the aging process in other (similar) bodily tissues in general. This could help in determining impact on astronauts on future missions to the Moon and Mars where environmental conditions are more challenging.

Urine Processing Assembly (UPA): On Saturday, while the UPA was in process there were 3 instances of High Pressure Error, each fault resulted in the UPA shutting down. The UPA is currently in Standby. Ground Teams are currently developing troubleshooting steps.

Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly Bed Remove & Replace (R&R) Prep: In preparation for this week’s Node 3 (N3) CDRA beds and Air Selector Valves (ASV) 104 and 106 R&R, Virts and Kelly reviewed procedures and gathered equipment.

SpaceX (SpX)-6 Cargo Operations: As of late last Friday, SpX-6 cargo transfer was approximately 75% complete.

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

Greasing exposed ARED wires
ARED Flywheel Cylinder Evacuation
Set up Video Equipment to Record Exercise Session
?? 715 Kentavr Suit Adjustments
CARDIOVECTOR. Experiment Ops / r/g 8700
Crew Departure Prep
Audio Dosimeter Preparation
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Recovery Procedure Review
MOON – Timer start
Surface samples from FGB equipment and structures / r/g 8677
Conference of Search and Rescue (????) specialists with returning crew
MOON – Camera D4 tuning
Verification of ??-1 Flow Sensor Position
CDRA – Equipment gathering for air valve R&R
MRM1 Interior Imagery and photos downlink via OCA / r/g 8682
“CHIBIS-M” Functionality Check.Tag up with specialists / r/g 8701
MOON – Photography (Part 1)
SKNB – Experiment Ops with Data Downlink
Surface samples from SM equipment and structures / r/g 8677
URAGAN. Observations and Photography / r/g 8703
EXPRESS Rack 5. Absent Doors and Panels installation
EXPRESS Rack 5. Absent Doors and Panels installation
US Hardware Preparation For Stowage in Soyuz #715
Collecting condensate water samples from ???-?2? before Gas-Liquid Mixture Filter r/g 8683
JEM- SLT Laptop Reboot
Periodic Fitness Evaluation – subject
JEM AL- FOD Survey
VIZIR. Experiment Ops. / r/g 8698
JEMAL – JEM Airlock Slide Table (ST) Retraction from JEF side
Potable Water Collection in SM for In-Flight Chemical and Microbial Analysis
WRS – Recycle Tank Fill [Aborted]
Water Purification System Sampling
RR – Retrieval from MELFI
Surface samples from SM equipment and structures / r/g 8677
Photography and Downlink of Interior behind SM Panel 326 photos via OCA / r/g 8697 [Aborted]
RR – Mice Habitat Restock
Preparation of Returned and Disposed Items on Soyuz #715 / r/g 8650nu, 8461, 8636
Crew Return Preparation
Surface samples from FGB equipment and structures / r/g 8677
TOCA Potable Water Dispenser (PWD) Sample Analysis
Exercise data downlink / r/g 6797
MATRYOSHKA-R. Monitoring Lulin-5 readings / r/g 8695
MOON – Camera Settings Check Out
Photography and Downlink of MRM2 Interior photos via OCA / r/g 8682
MOON – Photography (Part 2)
Pre-pack cargo items for return or disposal on ?? 715 / r/g 8650, 8461, 8636
RR- Cleaning Animal Access Unit
Camcoder Settings Check for Photo/TV
Water Analysis with MCD
IMS Delta File Prep
TOCA Data Recording
COGN – Battery Testing
Completed Task List Items

COL stowage consolidation
IMAX – 1DC body swap
IMAX C500 card format
Ground Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.

RRM ops
Three-Day Look Ahead:

Tuesday, 05/05: CDRA chassis removal/ASV 104, 106 R&R, TripleLux A, MPCC laptop install, 41S Prepack
Wednesday, 05/06: CDRA bed install
Thursday, 05/07: CDRA chassis replace, BCAT, MERLIN prep for SpX-6 return
QUICK ISS Status – Environmental Control Group:

Component – Status
Elektron – On
Vozdukh – Manual
[???] 1 – SM Air Conditioner System (“SKV1”) – On
[???] 2 – SM Air Conditioner System (“SKV2”) – Off
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Lab – Operate
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Node 3 – Standby
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Lab – Shutdown
Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Node 3 – Operate
Oxygen Generation Assembly (OGA) – Process
Urine Processing Assembly (UPA) – Standby
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Lab – Off
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Node 3 – Full Up

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