Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 13 November 2019 – Space Gardening

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
November 16, 2019
Filed under , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 13 November 2019 – Space Gardening
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 13 November 2019 - Space Gardening.

The Expedition 61 crewmembers started taking turns “weighing in” Wednesday before a slew of space gardening and life science activities.
The orbital residents are also nearing the start of a series of spacewalks to repair the International Space Station’s cosmic particle detector.

Isaac Newton’s Second Law of Motion allows for the calculation of mass in space using a variant of the equation — force equals mass times acceleration. Each crewmate attached themselves to a device this morning that applies a known force to the subject. The resulting acceleration provides a value used to calculate an astronaut’s mass.

It is harvest time once again aboard the orbiting lab. NASA astronauts Jessica Meir and Christina Koch cut leaves from Mizuna mustard greens grown inside ESA’s (European Space Agency) Columbus lab module. Half of the space crop is destined for crew tasting while the other half was stowed in science freezers for analysis on Earth.

NASA Flight Engineer Andrew Morgan is getting ready for Friday’s spacewalk with ESA Commander Luca Parmitano. Morgan reviewed robotics activities planned for Friday’s excursion and checked spacewalking gear. The duo will set their U.S. spacesuits to battery power at 7:05 a.m. EST inside the Quest airlock signifying the start of their spacewalk. NASA TV begins its live coverage at 5:30 a.m.

Parmitano focused on science today attaching electrodes to himself after his “weigh-in” to measure any changes to his body fat. Afterward, he collected noise level measurements in Russia’s Zarya module. He then set up samples in the U.S. Destiny lab module to explore how fluids behave in microgravity to improve medical conditions on Earth.

Cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka handed over radiation detectors to Meir for deployment in the station’s U.S. segment. He later joined cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov and recorded video to share historical space accomplishments with Russian audiences.

On-Orbit Status Report

Veg-04B: The crew performed a harvest for consumption and filled out the taste survey. The Pick-and-Eat Salad-Crop Productivity, Nutritional Value, and Acceptability to Supplement the ISS Food System (Veg-0404A, Veg-04B, and Veg-05) investigation is a phased research project to address the need for a continuous fresh-food production system in space. A healthy, nutritious diet is essential for long-duration exploration missions, which means that the typical pre-packaged astronaut diet needs to be supplemented by fresh foods during flight; the Veggie Vegetable Production System (Veggie) has begun testing aboard the space station to help meet this need, and validation tests have demonstrated that leafy greens can be grown in spaceflight. The research of Veg-04B focuses on the impact of light quality and fertilizer on leafy crop growth for a 56-day grow-out, microbial food safety, nutritional value, taste acceptability by the crew, and the overall behavioral health benefits of having plants and fresh food in space.

MISSE-FF (Materials ISS Experiment Flight Facility): The crew performed a retraction of the JEM Airlock table and removed the MISSE-MSCs (Material Sample Carriers) from the MISSE Transfer Tray. The MSCs were packed for return. The JEM-EF is a unique platform on the ISS that is located outside of the Japanese Experiment module (JEM), Kibo (Hope) and is continuously exposed to the space environment. Astronauts exchange payloads/payload facilities from the Kibo through the scientific airlock using the Kibo Remote Manipulator System. Payloads/payload facilities positioned on the exterior platform focus on Earth observation, as well as, communication, scientific, engineering and materials science experiments.

NutrISS (Nutrition Monitoring for the International Space Station): The crew performed measurements on the skin as part of the NUTRISS study. The questionnaire was also completed. Long-duration spaceflight induces relevant changes in body composition and a loss of body mass. In the NutrISS investigation, a periodic assessment of body composition (body weight, fat mass, and fat-free mass) during spaceflight aboard the ISS is carried out using a dedicated bio-impedance analysis device to allow for the measurement of long-term energy balance modification over time. It is hypothesized that an adjusted diet maintaining a near-neutral energy balance, and/or increasing protein, intake can limit microgravity-induced bone and muscle loss.

PK-4 (Plasma Krystall-4): The crew performed the third set of runs for Commissioning #8 operations involving particle cloud trappings inside the PK-4 Chamber. PK-4 is a scientific collaboration between the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), performing research in the field of “Complex Plasmas”: 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, and Non-linear waves and Instabilities in the plasmas.

Ring Sheared Drop: The crew removed the existing syringe and test cell and swapped it with a new syringe and test cell in preparation for the next experiment run. The Ring Sheared Drop investigation uses microgravity to examine the formation and flow of amyloids in the absence of surface tension and other complications created by the solid walls of a container. Fibrous, extracellular protein deposits found in organs and tissues, amyloids are associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Results could contribute to better understanding of these diseases as well as to development of advanced materials.

Space Biofilms: The crew terminated the Group Activation Packs (GAPs) and then placed the GAPs into cold stowage as part of Ops Session 3. The Characterization of Biofilm Formation, Growth, and Gene Expression on Different Materials and Environmental Conditions in Microgravity (Space Biofilms) investigation characterizes the mass, thickness, structure, and associated gene expression of biofilms that form in space by analyzing different microbial species grown on different materials. Biofilm formation can cause equipment malfunction and human illnesses, and could be a serious problem on future long-term human space missions.

Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) Extravehicular Activity (EVA): Today, the ISS crew continued their preparation for AMS EVA #1 by completing On board Training (OBT) Robotics training. The training supports the upcoming EVA to replace the Tracker Thermal Control System (TTCS) with an Upgraded Tracker Thermal Control System (UTTPS). Over time, the TTCS cooling pumps have slowly degraded and have experienced a loss of coolant (liquid CO2). The UTTPS will allow the AMS team to continue to collect data to on anti-helium nuclei and dark matter. AMS-02 is a state-of-the-art particle physics detector that uses the unique environment of space to advance knowledge of the universe and lead to the understanding of the universe’s origin by searching for antimatter, dark matter and measuring cosmic rays.


Functional Cargo Block [sic] (FGB) Acoustic Monitor Survey Part 3: This FGB acoustic monitor survey will be used to assess the acoustic properties of the newly installed low-noise FGB Dust Collectors. Today, MCC Moscow (MCC-M) deactivated the FGB air circulation fans ??1 & 2 and the Thermal Control System (TCS) Heat Exchanger fans 2, 3, and 5. Once the FGB air circulation fans were configured for the acoustic monitoring, the crew took a final set of measurements for the new FGB Dust Collectors. Following the measurements, MCC-M returned the FGB air circulation systems to a nominal configuration.

Node 3 (N3) Intermodule Ventilation (IMV) Cleaning: Today, the crew cleaned the Node 3 Aft Port IMV fan inlet flow straighteners, inlet silencer and outlet silencer. This task required the crew to remove the NOD3A1-02 closeout panel to gain access to the Node 3 Aft Port IMV Fan and Silencer. Once accessed, the crew used a vacuum to remove dust and debris from the IMV Fan Inlet Flow Straighteners and the IMV Grille. Once complete the crew re-installed the closeout panel and the ground team performed a nominal re-activation of the IMV.

Completed Task List Activities:
No task list activities completed

Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
Payload Operations Support

Thursday, 11/14 (GMT 318): Half Off-Duty

BFF Cleaning Test Install #1 and #2 and Syringe swap (NASA)
Food Acceptability (NASA)
Standard Measures Post-Sleep (NASA)
BEST Sample transfer from Media kit to Tubes (NASA)
Food Physiology Crew Diet Briefing (NASA)
PK-4 HD swap, Chamber Cleaning and Monitor De-install (RS Joint)

THC IMV Flow Measurement
73P IMS Stow

Friday, 11/15 (GMT 319): AMS EVA #1

VEG-04B chk (NASA)
HERMES Vacuum Valve Close (NASA)
Space Biofilms Sample GAP Term and MELFI insert (NASA)
PK-4 Hard drive swap, Chamber Gas Exchange and stow (RS Joint)

73P IMS Stow

Saturday, 11/16 (GMT 320):

VEG-04B chk (NASA)

EDAR Start
EMU Water & LLB Recharge
EMU Metox Regen

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

Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Reminder for EVA In-Suit Light Exercise (ISLE) Preparation
??-8. Configuration Setup
Body Mass Measurement – BMMD
Bioimpedance Assembly Measurement
??-8. Closeout Ops
On MCC GO Regeneration of Micropurification Unit (???) ?2 Cartridge, initiate
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool for Windows (WinSCAT) Test
MATRYOSHKA-R. Prep and Initialization of Bubble-Dosimeter Detectors
Photo/TV Lab Standard Definition (SD) Reconfiguration
??-4. Replacement of hard drives
Radiation Dosimetry Inside ISS-Neutrons Hardware Handover
MATRYOSHKA-R.Photography of BUBBLE-dosimeter During handover
MATRYOSHKA-R. Handover of BUBBLE-dosimeter detectors to USOS
Radiation Dosimetry Inside ISS-Neutrons
MATRYOSHKA-R. BUBBLE-dosimeter initialization and deployment for exposure
High Rate Dosimeter (HRD) Data Take
??-4. Run 3
ISS HAM Service Module Pass
FGB Acoustic Monitor Setup and Noise Survey
VEG-04B Part 1 Consumption Harvest
COSMOCARD. Preparing for and Starting 24-hr ECG Recording.
VEG-04B Harvest Assist for Consume Harvest
Temperature measurements of battery modules No.1-No.8 of ???? case and connectors (before mating circuit connectors).
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tool Configuring
Temperature measurements of battery modules No.1-No.8 of ???? case and connectors, assistance
VEG-04B MERLIN Sample Insertion
VEG-04B Part 2 & 3 Consumption Harvest
Acoustic Monitor Data Transfer
Portable Onboard Computers (POC) Dynamic Onboard Ubiquitous Graphics (DOUG) Software Review
VEG-04B MELFI Insertion #3
VEG-04B MERLIN Sample Removal
VEG-04B Plant Sanitize
Temperature measurements of battery modules No.1-No.8 of ???? case and connectors, assistance
Temperature measurements of battery modules No.1-No.8 of ???? case and connectors (when ???3 responds).
Ring-Sheared Drop Syringe and Test Cell Removal and Install
??-4. Run 3
HRF Veg Veg-04 Taste Test And Survey
Preparing for ??515 Replacement (???2?) in SM Onboard Measurement Telemetry Subsystem (????2)-12 system.
RSD MELFI Sample Insertion
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tool Audit & Configuring
Vacuum cleaning of FGB pressurized adapter
JEM Airlock Ops
??? maintenance
In-flight Maintenance (IFM) Node 3 Aft Port Intermodule Ventilation (IMV) Fan Cleaning
MISSE-FF MSC Retrieval and Pack Procedure Review
Space Biofilms GAP Termination
Space Biofilms MELFI Sample Insertion Operations Session 4
Materials ISS Experiment – Flight Facility (MISSE-FF) JEM Video Setup
Space Biofilms MELFI Sample Insertion Operations Session 5
GREAT START. Preparation for the Experiment
Materials ISS Experiment (MISSE) MTT Removal and Stowage
GREAT START. Video Recording the Great Start Session
Materials ISS Experiment (MISSE) MSC Pack
JEM ORU Xfer I/F Removal
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Recording
CONTENT. Experiment Ops
GREAT START. Closeout Ops
JEM Airlock Slide Table Suspect Fastener Hole Inspection
Perform EDV-Adapter Test
IMS Delta File Prep
CONTENT. Experiment Ops
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Procedure Review
Environmental Health System (EHS) – Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion (CSA-CP) Checkout
VEG-04B Plant Check/Watering for each Plant Pillow
BioFabrication Facility Procedure Review1
Simplified Aid For EVA Rescue (SAFER) Checkout
Standard Measures Pre-sleep Questionnaire
On MCC GO Regeneration Micropurification Unit (???) ?2 Absorption Cartridge, terminate

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