Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 10 August, 2020 – Space Physics and Biotechnology Research

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
August 12, 2020
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 10 August, 2020 – Space Physics and Biotechnology Research
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 10 August, 2020 - Space Physics and Biotechnology Research.

Advanced space physics and biotechnology research kicked off the week for the Expedition 63 trio aboard the International Space Station.
Commander Chris Cassidy of NASA started Monday operating a variety of science experiments that observe different microgravity phenomena. He continued researching water droplets in the U.S. Destiny laboratory module to promote water conservation and improve water pressure for space and Earth facilities.

The veteran astronaut, whose first mission was in 2009, also worked in Japan’s Kibo laboratory module maintaining the BioLab incubator. He opened up the space biology research device, that houses microbes, tissue cultures and small invertebrates, and checked fans, sensors and relative humidity.

Cassidy also joined his crewmates, cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner, for body mass measurements aboard the orbiting lab today. The device uses a Newtonian method that applies a known force to an individual with the resulting acceleration providing a mass calculation in microgravity.

Ivanishin also spent Monday splitting his time between Earth observations and biomedical research. The three-time station visitor photographed global landmarks to observe and forecast the effects of man-made and natural catastrophes. He then moved onto to exploring the survivability of enzymes and bone marrow cells in the weightless environment.

First-time space flyer Ivan Vagner worked all day in the station’s Russian segment on biotechnology research. He collected microbe samples from the air and lab surfaces for incubation and analysis to understand and monitor conditions for safe and sterile space research gear.

On-Orbit Status Report


Biological Experiment Laboratory (BioLab): The crew performed health checks of the BioLab Glovebox seals and gloves including sensors for the fan status, delta pressure, temperature and relative humidity. The BioLab is a multiuser research facility located in the Columbus laboratory. It is used to perform space biology experiments on microorganisms, cells, tissue cultures, small plants, and small invertebrates. BioLab allows scientists to gain a better understanding of the effects of microgravity and space radiation on biological organisms.

Droplet Formation Study: The crew performed the setup and initiation of recording for additional runs of the DFS investigation and performed any residual water cleanup from the test hardware. Data will be archived by an alternate method which will actually result in a quicker delivery time to the experiment team. This completes this run of tests and the hardware will be stowed. Droplet Formation Studies in Microgravity (Droplet Formation Study) seeks to evaluate the water droplet formation, water flow, and pressure of Delta Faucet’s current H2Okinetic shower head technology versus the industry-standard use of jet nozzles. H2Okinetic technology allows better control of droplet size and increases the speed of the drops (fewer water drops are used, but the droplets are larger and are moving faster), which creates a feeling of increased pressure for the end user. The study evaluates how best to control the output of water droplets to create a better performing shower device that provides an improved experience for the end user while also conserving water and energy.

Materials Science Laboratory (MSL): The crew inserted the calibration cartridge into the MSL to allow ground teams to perform a calibration run on the facility. MSRR Z-book battery was configured for extended life mode. The MSL is used for basic materials research in the microgravity environment of the ISS. The MSL can accommodate and support diverse experiment modules. In this way many material types, such as metals, alloys, polymers, semiconductors, ceramics, crystals, and glasses, can be studied to discover new applications for existing materials and new or improved materials.

Telescience Resource Kit (TReK): The TReK laptop was powered on to allow ground teams to test out the new PEP R14 Pathfinder software. Operating space hardware still requires a complicated set of computer software, which operations teams on the ground maintain. The Flight Demonstration of TReK is a software package that simplifies the software running on the ISS, benefiting users on Earth. Eventually, TReK software will allow scientists, engineers and students who conduct experiments in space to connect to their experiments through regular Internet connection protocols using the new and improved onboard Ethernet communications recently added to ISS.


Starboard Solar Array Wing (SAW) Imagery: Today, the crew photographed the inboard SAWs (1A and 3A), the outboard arrays (1B and 3B) and their masts. The photos have been downlinked for team review. The yearly inspection is performed to identify possible structural damage to the solar array components.

Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis & Data Record: Crew performed an analysis of the water processing assembly (WPA) using the TOCA. The TOCA unit oxidizes organic carbon species present in the water to carbon dioxide gas and measures the concentration using nondispersive infrared spectroscopy. Analysis of the potable water using the TOCA occurs on a weekly basis.

Completed Task List Activities:

ZBook Hardware Consolidate
MELFI 1 Dewar Clean Part 1
PCS Laptop Relocate
PLUTO H/W Consolidate Part 2
SSC 24 Universal Serial Bus device Reseat and Photograph
Adlink Troubleshooting
Extravehicular Mobility Unit Helmet Absorption Pads – Wanted
PBA S/N 1015 Discharge
Onboard Training (OBT) Robotics On-board Trainer (ROBoT) Setup
Today’s Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

Ground Support for Starboard SAW Survey
VS Limit Update post MSRR Ops
Look Ahead Plan

Tuesday, 8/11 (GMT 224)

Droplet Formation Study stow (NASA)
CBEF Regulator Insert (JAXA)
KIBO Studio XF305 camera setup

CMS ARED Cylinder Evac
Wednesday, 8/12 (GMT 225)

PBRE-2 Hardware setup (NASA)
KIBO Studio recording (JAXA)

HTV Cargo Handover
Thursday, 8/13 (GMT 226)

ELF Cartridge Swap (NASA)
Astrobee Cargo Placement (NASA)
JEM Water Recovery System Cable connect (JAXA)

HTV Departure OBT
VHF Emer Checkout
N2 IMV Screen Installation
COLD2 Rack Bag Fill
Today’s Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

Body Mass Measurement – BMMD
??? (Universal Bioengineering Thermostat). Checking ???-? No.07 thermostat temperature and unobstructed area near ???-? inlet/outlet vents
Photo/TV SAW Mast Starboard Survey
Droplet Formation Study Test Operations 12 & Water Cleanup
Biolab Glovebox Health Check
URAGAN. Observation and photography using photo equipment
ASEPTIC. Surface sampling and beginning of air sampling
Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis & Data Record
Broadband Communication System (???) Video Server Unit Power Cycling
Inventory Audit of ???? office equipment
Telescience Resource Kit Laptop Deploy
CONSTANTA-2. Preparation and execution
Material Science Laboratory Calibration Cartridge Insertion Without Laptop
MSRR ZBOOK Battery Troubleshooting
Urine Transfer System Offload EDV Swap
Russian Photo and Video for Project “Space Lesson 2.0 Restart”
Hematocrit Hardware Setup

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