Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 August 2018 – Remote Robotic Algorithm Testing

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
August 21, 2018
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 August 2018 – Remote Robotic Algorithm Testing
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 August 2018 - Remote Robotic Algorithm Testing.

The Expedition 56 crew members explored using algorithms to remotely control a robot on the ground and satellites from the International Space Station today.
The orbital residents are also cleaning up after a Russian spacewalk while preparing for a pair of upcoming U.S. spacewalks and a Japanese cargo mission.

Astronaut Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency is testing the ability to control a robot on a planetary surface from an orbiting spacecraft. The study seeks to bolster the success and safety of future space missions with astronauts and robots sharing decision-making responsibilities.

Commander Drew Feustel joined Flight Engineer Ricky Arnold in the Japanese Kibo lab module monitoring a pair of tiny internal satellites, also known as SPHERES. They are evaluating an algorithm that controls the operation of the SPHERES in formation using six degrees of freedom.

Cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev and Sergey Prokopyev are cleaning up after Wednesday’s spacewalk enabling new science outside of the space station. The two dried out their Russian Orlan spacesuits and water feed lines then began stowing spacewalk tools and gear.

At the end of the day, Gerst started charging U.S. spacesuit batteries ahead of two maintenance spacewalks planned for Sept. 20 and 26. Gerst and fellow spacewalkers Feustel and Arnold will replace batteries on the Port 4 truss structure’s power channels. The Japanese “Kounotori” HTV-7 cargo ship is targeted to deliver the new batteries ahead of the two spacewalks on Sept. 14.

On-Orbit Status Report

SUPVIS-JUSTIN: The crew set up and performed protocol operations for ESA’s SUPVIS-Justin investigation today. SUPVIS-Justin, part of the Meteron program, aims to demonstrate that an astronaut on an orbiting space station can command a robot via a tablet PC to perform complex tasks on a planetary surface. The SUPVIS-Justin experiment includes an extended supervised autonomy concept: the crew gives high-level commands to the robot, which then uses its local intelligence and decision-making capability to execute a task independently, according to pre-programmed algorithms. In this sense, the responsibility of decision-making is shared between the crew and the robot.

Manufacturing Device Granular Damping: The crew assembled the hardware for Manufacturing Device Granular Damping this morning. The Granular Damping experiment displays the damping mechanism of granular material, which can be made more effectively in microgravity than on ground. For this demonstration, three-dimensional printed granular shells were produced on-orbit. Small particles (granules) are packed inside a larger shell (damper) that is either spherical or cylindrical. The experiment demonstrates how the different amount of filling material affects the amount of dissipation upon collision, using shells of spherical and cylindrical forms filled with different amounts of granules.

Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites (SPHERES) ReSwarm: The crew performed the inaugural run for the SPHERES ReSwarm investigation today. This run will be used to evaluate the six-degrees of freedom (dof) performance of a swarm control algorithm that distinguishes the tasks of formation keeping and governance; provide an initial evaluation of the integration and performance of a more advanced formation controller to adapt formation planning to model uncertainties; and evaluate the robustness of the algorithms for six-dof dynamics, being an evaluation of scalability to a large number of agents easily achievable in a ground setting. Swarms of small spacecraft are expected to become feasible in the near future, creating a new range of capabilities for Earth and space observation missions. The ReSwarm control algorithms are applicable to swarms of small to femto-spacecraft. They scale easily with the formation size and remain applicable to multiple mission scenarios.

Barrios Protein Crystal Growth (PCG): Today the crew used the NanoRacks microscope to take photographs of samples on a Barrios PCG microplate that they removed from the Space Automated Bioproduct Laboratory (SABL). The Barrios PCG investigation focuses on the successful transfer and mixing of different solutions into commercial off-the-shelf multiwell plates.

Binary Colloidal Alloy Test – Cohesive Sediment (BCAT-CS): The crew checked the camera alignment and focus by viewing the latest BCAT images on laptop and then re-set the intervalometer as needed. The BCAT-CS investigation studies the forces between particles that cluster together by using sediments of quartz and clay particles. Conducting the research in the microgravity environment of the ISS makes it possible to separate the forces acting on the particles over a short range (adhesive forces) versus those acting over a long range (cohesive forces). The quartz/clay system is commonly found in a wide variety of environmental settings (such as rivers, lakes, and oceans) and plays an important role in technological efforts related to deep-sea hydrocarbon drilling and carbon dioxide sequestration.

Story Time From Space: A crewmember participated in the Story Time from Space project this morning by reading from “If I Were anAstronaut” while being videotaped and photographed. The recording will be downlinked and used for educational purposes. Story Time From Space combines science literacy outreach with simple demonstrations recorded onboard the ISS. Crewmembers read science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related children’s books on orbit, and complete simple science concept experiments. Video and data collected during the demonstrations are downlinked to the ground and posted in a video library with accompanying educational materials.

ExtraVehicular Activity (EVA) Battery Charging: The crew configured the lithium-ion battery charger to initiate an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Long Life Battery (LLB) charge Autocycle on two new EMU batteries. These batteries are needed to support the upcoming H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV)-7 Battery R&R EVAs scheduled in September.

Treadmill 2 (T2): T2 rack experienced a false fire alarm this morning during crew use. Activity was stopped. Troubleshooting was attempted and resulted in an additional false fire alarm. T2 is currently NO GO for use. Team is investigating the cause.

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

Payload Control Box (S/N001) Checkout
MWA Preparation for Manufacturing Device Operations
Recycle Tank Drain
Manufacturing Device Granular Damping Assemble
Camcorder deinstallation in MRM2
High Definition Video Camera Assembly 2 Activation in High Definition Mode
Drying Orlan-MKS No.4 and No.5 Water Feed Line
Supvis-Justin Setup for Operations
Story Time Book If I Were an Astronaut Read
Story Time Historical Photo Documentation
Haptics Software Update
Refill of water tank in Orlan-MKS No.4 and No.5
Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Long Life Battery (LLB) Initiate
SUPVIS-JUSTIN Protocol Operation
Photo/TV EVA GOPRO Card Transfer – RS CREW
Photo/TV EVA GoPRO Stow
Drying Orlan-MKS No.4 and No.5, start
NanoRacks Barrios PCG Sample Removal from SABL
Surface Tension Containment Data Transfer
Post-EVA Orlan Debrief With Specialists
NanoRacks Barrios Protein Crystal Growth Microscope Ops
Post-EVA Glisser-M cameras Ops.
Haptics Operations Conclude
High Definition Video Camera Assembly 2 Switch to SD Mode
Drying Orlan-MKS No.4 and No.5 (switchover to a backup fan)
Binary Colloidal Alloy Test – Cohesive Sedimentation Camera Activities
Wastewater Storage Tank Assembly (WSTA) Fill
SPHERES Crew Conference
Battery Charge Deactivation for MetabolicSpace
Charging of Light Field Camera
SPHERES Test Session Setup
Removal of Portable Repress Tank in SM [??] and stowage in MRM2 (???)
Combustion Integrated Rack FOMA Calibration Valve Open
SPHERES Reswarm Run
??? maintenance
Preparation of HRM Bluetooth Transmitter for Spacetex-2 experiment
Drying Orlan-MKS No.4, No.5 end
Orlan No.4 and ??? storage mode operation
Orlan No.5 Storage Mode Operation
RESTOW 1.0 CTB and PWD Filter
Ultrasound 2 HRF Rack 1 Setup And Power On Alternate
US Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tools Stow
Orlan Equipment pre-pack for stowage and disposal after EVA
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Ultrasound 2 Scan
??? ??1 outage
MELFI3 2 Icebrick Insertion
Ultrasound 2 HRF Rack 1 Stow Alternate
INTERACTION-2. Experiment Ops
Sextant Navigation Session 3 Operations [Deferred]
ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
SPHERES Test Session Shutdown
Inventory Management System (IMS) Conference

Completed Task List Activities:

Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
Routine commanding

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Saturday, 08/18: Weekly Housekeeping, Crew Off Duty
Sunday, 08/19: Crew Off Duty
Monday, 08/20: JSSOD/MPEP removal, DESIS install, CIR Valve Timer, ACE-T2 config, BPC, Cobalt Brick teardown, BEST, LLB Ops, METEOR HD swap, PGT TAK, ZeroG Battery test, Metabolic Space/SpaceTEX2, ESA EPO Granular Damping

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

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