Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 December 2019

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
December 26, 2019
Filed under , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 December 2019
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 December 2019.

The International Space Station is gearing up for the arrival of Boeing’s new CST-100 Starliner crew ship this weekend. Meanwhile, the Expedition 61 crew checked out a new baking oven, researched life science and replaced a treadmill belt.
Boeing’s first Orbital Flight Test of its first commercial crew vehicle is moving ahead toward launch Friday at 6:39 a.m. EST from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The uncrewed Starliner will approach the station for an automated docking on Saturday at 8:27 a.m. to the forward port of the Harmony module.

NASA Flight Engineers Jessica Meir and Christina Koch are getting ready for Starliner’s arrival and its undocking planned for Dec. 28 at 12:44 a.m. The duo reviewed leak check, hatch opening and vehicle ingress procedures for the vehicle after its docking. Both astronauts also familiarized themselves with hatch closing, depressurization and leak check activities necessary before Starliner departs the station.

Commander Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency) tested the ability of the new NanoRacks Zero-G Oven to bake food in space today. He then joined Meir for eye exams in the afternoon.

A host of life science activities kept NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan busy all day Tuesday. Morgan first installed a new artificial gravity generator inside a Japanese incubator. Next, he removed a science freezer from the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship and installed it into the Columbus lab module.

Finally, veteran cosmonauts Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Skripochka spent the day replacing a treadmill belt in the Zvezda service module. One of two treadmills aboard the orbiting lab, the other is the COLBERT treadmill located in the U.S. Tranquility module.

On-Orbit Status Report

CBEF-L (Cell Biology Experiment Facility – Left): The crew installed the CBEF-L centrifuge and performed the necessary temperature/humidity sensor relocations to support the ground-commanded checkout activities. CBEF-L is a new JAXA subrack facility, which is an upgraded facility of the original Cell Biology Experiment Facility (CBEF) currently aboard the International Space Station (ISS). CBEF-L provides new capabilities with additional new resources such as Full High Definition video interface, Ethernet, 24 VDC power supply, and a larger diameter centrifugal test environment. By using the original CBEF and CBEF-L as one facility for the same experiment, the payload user is provided with an upgraded experimental environment that can handle the processing of more experimental samples for a wider array of experiments.

ECHO maintenance: The ECHO hardware was deployed to allow the ground team to perform scheduled maintenance. Once the maintenance was completed, the crew stowed the hardware again. Echo is a tele-operated ultrasound system, equipped with motorized probes that are controlled by flight controllers on the ground.

JEM Water Recovery System (JWRS): The crew performed the water collection, water transfer and bag exchange in support of the continuing JWRS checkout activities. The Demonstration JWRS will generate potable water from urine. In the past on manned spacecraft, urine and waste water were collected and stored, or vented overboard. For long-term space missions, however, water supply could become a limiting factor. Demonstrating the function of this water recovery system on orbit contributes to updating the Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) to support astronauts on the space station and future exploration missions.

Nanoracks Zero-G (ZGO) oven: The crew installed the ZGO Sample Tray in the Zero-G Oven to initiate a cooking session. Although the crew reported a cooling rack rail that unexpectedly came off, the ground team believes the impact will be minimal. Zero-G Oven examines heat transfer properties and the process of baking food in microgravity. It uses an oven designed specifically for use aboard the space station with a top temperature of 363.3° C. On future long-duration missions, fresh-baked food could have psychological and physiological benefits for crew members.

NutrISS (Nutrition Monitoring for the International Space Station): The crew set up the NutrISS Device and equipment, executed the final Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Measurement, removed the batteries and stowed the device. 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.

Rotifer-B1: The crew concluded the investigation run by removing the Rotifer-B1 Experiment Container from Kubik. The Rotifer-B1 investigation aims to explore the effects that spaceflight has on both the metabolism and genomic/genetic level of the bdelloid rotiferAdineta vaga. This is achieved by culturing rotifers in Kubik, an on-orbit incubator facility. After exposing rotifers to space conditions inside the ISS, samples are frozen and returned to Earth for post flight analyses.


Boeing OFT Preparations: Today, the ISS prepared for the Boeing OFT mission arrival and performed Computer Based Training (CBT) that is designed to familiarize the crew with the Boeing Starliner vehicle. Currently, Starliner is scheduled to launch on December 20 and dock with the ISS on December 21.

P6 Heat Exchanger Endoscope Replacement: As part of the Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Snorkel Detailed Test Objective (DTO), the endoscope installed in the P6 heat exchanger was inundated with water. Therefore, today the crew removed the old, failed USOS Endoscope (S/N 1001) from the LAB1P6 CCAA Heat Exchanger and installed the new USOS Endoscope (S/N 1002). Also the crew performed troubleshooting of the failed USOS Endoscope S/N 1001 to determine which hardware is failed. The new Endoscope will provide a view of the installed CDRA Snorkel so that the ground can verify that water is flowing around the snorkel as expected. With positive video results, more CDRA Snorkels will eventually be installed.

Completed Task List Activities:
No completed task list activities.

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

Tuesday, 12/17 (GMT 351)
ECHO maintenance
FNS relocate
Standard Measures
Nanoracks Zero-G oven
Polymer Convection gather
Rodent Research-19

Polar Dragon Transfer
IFM P6 Endoscope R&R
WHC operations
Columbus VCA R&R

Wednesday, 12/18 (GMT 352)
Actiwatch plus
MSRR/MSL SCA exchange
NREP review
Polymer Convection
Standard Measures

CST Prepack Transfer
ECL PEPS Inspection

Thursday, 12/19 (GMT 353)
Food Acceptability
Food Physiology
Kidney Cells Pump Install
Microgravity Crystals
JEMAL/NREP installation
PLNAS vent clean
Standard Measures

61S Emergency Drill
PCS Relocate
CST Prepack
Node 2 Hatch Open
SSC Relocate
CST Monitor S/U
Node 2 Fwd Clean-out

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

IMS delta file prep
Preparation of reports for Roscosmos website and social media
Saving personal data from T61p model of RSS1 laptop before replacing it with an HP ZBook
ECON-M. Observation and Photography
HRF Generic Saliva Collection 10 Minutes
МО-8. Configuration Setup
HRF Generic MELFI Sample Retrieval And Insertion Operations
Last Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Measurement
Standard Measures Body Sampling Survey
Standard Measures Body Sampling Collection
Body Mass Measurement – BMMD
МО-8. Closeout Ops
HRF Generic MELFI Sample Insertion Operations
Standard Measures Body Sampling Stow
JEM Airlock Depressurization
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Preheat
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Evaluation Setup
Setup and Activation of Crew Onboard Support Kit (КСПЭ) Equipment in SM for TV MPEG2 coverage Replacement of БД-2 Treadmill Belt
Echo setup for ground maintenance activities
БД-2 treadmill belt replacement. БД-2 treadmill maintenance.
Acoustic Monitor Setup for Crew Worn Measurements
XF305 Camcorder Setup
CBEF IU Temp/Humidity Sensor replace 1
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Evaluation – Subject
Cell Biology Experiment Facility Left (CBEF-L) Centrifuge Installation
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Evaluation – Crew Medical Officer (CMO)
In Flight Maintenance (IFM) LAB1P6 USOS Endoscope Remove and Replace (R&R)
Columbus HD-VCA2 R&R
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Periodic Health Status (PHS) Stow Hardware
Deactivate VCA2
Standard Measures Fecal Collection
HRF Generic MELFI Sample Insertion Operations
Standard Measures Fecal Collection Stow
Standard Measures Cognition Testing HRF PC2
JEM Airlock Vent
Rotifer-B1 Experiment Container deinstallation
Health Maintenance System (HMS) ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
Rotifer-B1 hardware insertion in MELFI
Private Medical Conference (PMC)
JEM Airlock Vent Confirmation
Polar (Unpowered) Dragon Uninstall, Transfer, and EXPRESS Rack Install
JEM Water Recovery System (JEM WRS) Potable Water Dispenser (PWD) Water Collect
CBEF IU Temp/Humidity Sensor replace 2
XF305 Camcorder Setup
JEM Water Recovery System (JEM WRS) Water Transfer.
JEM Water Recovery System (JWRS) Water Bag Exchange
On-Board Training (OBT) CST-100 OFT Operations familiarization
On MCC Go Deactivation of camcorder, TV system monitoring equipment, closing applications
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Polar Sample Removal
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Sample Swap
Polycon Hardware Gather
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Sample Installation
On-Board Training (OBT) CST-100 OFT OBT Conference
Fast Neutron Spectrometer Relocate to COL
Rodent Research Access Unit Clean
On-Board Training (OBT) CST-100 OFT Mission and Vehicle Overview
СОЖ maintenance Replacement of Gas Analyzer ИК0501 СО2 Filter Unit / Install No.210 (00076618R, СМ1РО_4_449_1, container No.431-11 (00068712R)). Old unit – to ПрК for disposal
Public Affairs Office (PAO) High Definition (HD) Config JEM Setup
PAO Preparation
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) – JEM
Food Acceptability Survey
Stowage of Echo hardware
Private Medical Conference (Ku + S-band)
Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Manual Fill Initiation
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Fundoscope Setup
Biomolecule Extraction and Sequencing Technology (BEST) MELFI Sample Insertion into a Box Module
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Sample Swap
LSG Work Volume Stow
Water Recovery System (WRS) Waste Tank Sample
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Fundoscope Prep
Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Manual Fill Termination
Health Maintenance System (HMS) CMO – Fundoscope
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Eye Exam – Fundoscope
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Fundoscope Tear Down and Stow
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Sample Remove
Private Medical Conference (PMC)
Acoustic Monitor Battery Swap
NanoRacks Zero-G Oven Polar Sample Insertion
Standard Measures Pre-sleep Questionnaire
Reminder Rodent Research Thermal Consideration

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