Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 16 January 2020 – Two More Spacewalks Scheduled This Month

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
January 19, 2020
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 16 January 2020 – Two More Spacewalks Scheduled This Month
NASA astronaut Christina Koch is pictured working in the vacuum of space 265 miles above the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Africa. She and NASA astronaut Jessica Meir (out of frame) conducted a spacewalk to install new lithium-ion batteries that store and distribute power collected from solar arrays on the station’s Port-6 truss structure. Credit: NASA.

The Expedition 61 crew is fresh off the first spacewalk of 2020 and preparing for two more before the end of the month. Meanwhile, the International Space Station residents continue ongoing microgravity research and life support maintenance.
NASA spacewalkers Jessica Meir and Christina Koch successfully installed two new lithium-ion batteries on Wednesday that store and distribute power collected from solar arrays on the station’s Port-6 truss structure. They will finish the battery replacement work during another six-and-a-half-hour spacewalk scheduled for Monday at 6:50 a.m. EST. NASA TV begins its live coverage of the spacewalk activities at 5:30 a.m.

The third spacewalk is planned for Jan. 25 with astronauts Andrew Morgan and Luca Parmitano. They will finish the complex thermal repair work they began last year on the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, an astrophysics device searching for evidence of antimatter and dark matter.

All four astronauts met in the afternoon and called down to Mission Control for a briefing with spacewalk specialists. The quartet had a routine discussion with the engineers about spacewalking gear and procedures.

On the Russian side of the orbiting lab, the two veteran cosmonauts worked back and forth on space science and the upkeep of the space station. Alexander Skvortsov spent a portion of his day on cell biology research before servicing an exercise cycle. Oleg Skripochka checked out a variety of hardware that detects micrometeoroid impacts on the station and observes natural catastrophes on Earth.

On-Orbit Status Report

Food Acceptability: The crew completed a Food Acceptability Survey using the Data Collection Tool on an available SSC (Station Support Computer). This investigation seeks to determine the impact of repetitive consumption of food currently available from the spaceflight food system. Results will be used in developing strategies to improve food system composition to support crew health and performance on long duration missions.

Cerebral Autoregulation (CA): In preparation for a future CA data collection, the crew performed the appropriate cable reconfiguration. As the body’s most important organ, the brain needs a strong and reliable blood supply, so the brain is capable of self-regulating blood flow even when the heart and blood vessels cannot maintain an ideal blood pressure. The Cerebral Autoregulation investigation tests whether this self-regulation improves in the microgravity environment of space.

Mouse Mission-5 (MM-5) prep: In preparation for MM -5, the crew Installed Mouse Habitat Cage Unit (one) to the Cell Biology Experiment Facility-Left (CBEF-L) Incubator Unit (IU) and removed Mouse Habitat Cage Unit (three) from CBEF-L IU. JAXA Mouse Habitat Unit-5 (MHU-5) examines the effects of partial G on mice using the JAXA-developed mouse habitat cage units (HCU) that can be installed in the newly developed Centrifuge-equipped Biological Experiment Facility-L (CBEF-L) on the ISS. Stress caused by partial G may alter gene expression in cells of the body. The investigation analyzes any such alterations and their possible effects on development of germ cells, which carry genetic information and expression to subsequent generations.


P6 Battery Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Operations: Following a successful P6 Battery Channel 4B EVA#3, the ISS crew participated in a debrief conference with the ground team specialists providing the ground team with valuable feedback on the EVA processes. The crew also performed the Extravehicular Activity Mobility Unit (EMU) battery charging and Metox regeneration activities, both of which restore the EMU suits for the upcoming EVA. In addition, the crew completed some preparatory tasks for the next P6 Channel Battery EVA#4 including procedure reviews along with Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) practice procedures.

Columbus Cycle 15 Software Transition: Today, the crew supported the preparation for the Columbus Module software transition by rotating the Human Research Facility (HRF2) rack and installing an upgraded Mass Memory Unit (MMU). The crew removed the MMU MkI and replaced it with the upgraded MMU MkII; the new MMU has the Cycle 15 Software already installed. This completed the second part of a two part MMU Remove and Replace (R&R) that transitions the Columbus Module Software to Cycle 15.

Completed Task List Activities:
No items were completed off the task list

Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
Payload Operations Support
SSRMS P6 Battery EVA Support

Friday, 1/17 (GMT 017)
Acoustic Diagnostics
CIR/AMCE manifold bottle replacement
Confined Combustion
Food Acceptability
JWRS bubble removal
GLACIER2 desiccant swap
HERMES vacuum valve
Standard Measures
Veggie-1 h/w R&R

Rechargeable EVA Battery Assembly Installation
EVA Tool Configuration
EVA Procedures Review and Conference
Camera Battery Charge Initiation and Swap
EVA LLB Ops Init/Term
METOX Removal/Install
BSA and METOX Term
EMU Water Recharge
EHS TOCA Buffer Container Change Out
COL PWS2 T61P Software Loads, Activation, and C/O (Cycle 15)

Saturday, 1/18 (GMT 018)
Payload NAS clean

Crew Off-Duty

Sunday, 1/19 (GMT 019)
Confined Combustion

EVA Procedure Review
EVA Procedure Conference
EVA Tool Configuration
EVA Tool Audit
EVA Equipment Lock Prep Part 2
Crew Departure Prep

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

Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Procedure Review
Preparation of reports for Roscosmos website and social media
URAGAN. Observation and photography using photo equipment
ECON-M. Observation and Photography
Daily Planning Conference (S-band)
OTKLIK. De-installation of Control Unit (??) and Operator Console (??).
Reading Pille dosimeter data after US EVA
MSK-2. Activation of glove box cleaning.
PAO hardware setup. Video/audio check
TV Conference with Representatives of Vladimir Region
Cleanup HRF-2 rotation path.
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Post EVA Examination Setup
MSK-2. Equipment Reconfig.
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Post EVA Examination – Subject
Columbus Video Camera Assembly 2 Adjustment
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Post EVA Examination – Crew Medical Officer (CMO)
HRF-2 Rack Tilt Down at COL1A4
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Post-EVA Periodic Health Status Examination – Stow
JAXA Mouse Mission Cage Detachment from CBEF-L IU
MSK-2. Disable Glove Box Cleaning.
Environmental Health System (EHS) – Microbial Capture Device (MCD) and Coliform Water Sample Analysis 44 +/- 4 hours post processing
MMU1 Remove and Replace
MSK-2. The second replacement of containers with nutrient medium. Insert in ???-? No.07 at +4 deg C setting. Tagup with specialists as necessary
OTKLIK. Closeout Ops
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Lithium Ion Battery Charger Verification
HRF-1 Rack Tilt Up at COL1A4
Portable Onboard Computers (POC) Dynamic Onboard Ubiquitous Graphics (DOUG) Software Review
Columbus Bay 4 Restore
120 to 24 VDC Conv Removal
Utility Outlet Panel (UOP) Activation.
Battery Stowage Assembly (BSA) Operation Initiation
URAGAN. VSS PL R&R. Tagup with specialists
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) – JEM
??-3? Cycle Ergometer Activities.
Stereo macro-photography of window No.1 cavity – procedure and r/g review
Stereo macro-photography of window No.1 cavity – Locating photo equipment
Metal Oxide (METOX) Regeneration Initiation
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Procedure Conference
Monitoring RSK1 Laptop Battery Charge

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