Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 February, 2021 – Progress 77 Cargo Delivered

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
February 20, 2021
Filed under , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 February, 2021 – Progress 77 Cargo Delivered
Russia's Progress 77 resupply ship docks to the station.

Russia’s ISS Progress 77 resupply ship delivered over a ton of nitrogen, propellant and oxygen early Wednesday morning to the International Space Station.
Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus space freighter is up next as it counts down to this weekend’s launch from Virginia to the orbiting lab.

The Progress 77 docked to the Pirs docking compartment on Wednesday at 1:27 a.m. EST following a two-day trip that began with a launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Commander Sergey Ryzhikov remotely guided the Progress 77 to its docking port with the TORU (tele-robotic rendezvous system) after the vehicle automatically switched over from the Kurs automated rendezvous system.

Ryzhikov and Flight Engineer Sergey Kud-Sverchkov then began a series of hours-long leak and pressure checks with the Progress 77. The duo finally opened the hatch to the new Russian cargo craft to begin transferring its cargo. Progress 77 will stay at the station for about 5 months when it will finally detach Pirs from the Zvezda service module’s Earth-facing port opening it up for the new Nauka multipurpose laboratory module.

Northrop Grumman is readying its next Cygnus cargo mission to launch this Saturday at 12:36 p.m. atop the Antares rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Cygnus will be packed with about 8,000 pounds of science experiments, station hardware and crew supplies destined for the Expedition 64 crew.

Cygnus will orbit the Earth for nearly two days before its rendezvous with the station on Feb. 22. JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Soichi Noguchi will be on robotics duty early Monday and command the Canadarm2 robotic arm to capture Cygnus at about 4:40 a.m. NASA Flight Engineer Michael Hopkins will back him up monitoring Cygnus’ approach and rendezvous.

On-Orbit Status Report


Confined Combustion: The crew prepare Confined Combustion samples for flame test operations and conducted tests with ground assistance from the Principle Investigator (PI). Confined Combustion examines the behavior of flame as it spreads in differently shaped confined spaces in microgravity. Flame spread observations are translated into mathematical models for use in understanding the results and applying them to areas with different shapes.

Plant Water Management: The crew primed the Plat Water Management experiment and set the intervalometer on Digital Camera to start a 48 hr Plant Water Management-Soil Experiment. The Plant Water Management investigation demonstrates passive measures for controlling fluid delivery and uptake in plant growth systems. Reduced gravity creates challenges in providing adequate fluid and nutrition for plant growth. This investigation examines using other physical properties such as surface tension, wetting and system geometry to replace the role of gravity.

SERFE (Spacesuit Evaporation Rejection Flight Experiment): The crew extracted water from the SERFE Hardware for post-flight analysis and stowed the used Contingency Water Container (CWC).

SERFE demonstrates a new technology to remove heat from spacesuits and maintain appropriate temperatures for crew members and equipment during space walks. The technology uses evaporation of water for cooling. The investigation determines whether microgravity affects performance and evaluates the technology’s effect on contamination and corrosion of spacesuit material.

Vascular Echo was not performed today. Ops were deferred and are being planned for a later date.

WetLab-2 One-Step Gene Sampling Tool: The crew completed cleanup and stowage of the WetLab-2 Hardware. One-Step Gene Sampling Tool to Improve the ISS Bioanalytical Facility (One-Step Gene Sampling Tool) tests a technology that collects ribonucleic acid (RNA) directly from tissue. It enables faster genetic analysis of multiple samples without the need to destroy the specimen, as traditional technology requires. These brief and repeatable screening experiments can help researchers make more informed decisions regarding when to terminate plant or animal growth investigations and extract the full genetic library.


Lithium Rechargeable Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Battery Assembly (LREBA) Operations: The crew initiated battery maintenance (autocycle) operations for LREBAs 1004 and 1005 using both channels of the Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Lithium-Ion battery charger and the 28-volt Power Supply Assembly (PSA) Utility Power Outlet (UPO). The EMU Lithium-Ion battery charger is powered on 28-volt only in order to limit the maximum charging current delivered to the LREBAs.

EVA High Definition EMU Camera Assembly (HECA) Configuration: The crew configured the HECA with its antennas and then connected the HECA to a Rechargeable EVA Battery Assembly (REBA). Once configured, the ground performed an activation and checkout. The crew deconfigured the HECA from the antennas and REBA after the checkout.

Cygnus Robotic on Board Trainer (RoBOT): FE-10 and FE-12 set up the RoBOT and completed an offset grapples proficiency training session.

Completed Task List Activities:

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

MSS Hover Maneuver
Crew Dragon System Checkout
MCA Zero Calibration
NORS Troubleshooting Support Commanding
Lab CDRA Activation
Look Ahead Plan

Thursday, February 18 (GMT 049)

AstroRad Vest Survey 2, Confined Combustion Test Operations, ISS Experience EVA Z-Cam Checkout, Plant Water Management Battery Exchange, Standard Measures Pre-sleep Questionnaire, Vascular Echo 13-Hour Blood Pressure Monitoring Conclude Alternate

EVA EMU resize
Cygnus cargo transfer review
Cygnus ROBoT Self Study
Columbus RF Cable R&R
Friday, February 19 (GMT 050)

3DMM Node 3 Sample Collection, Antimicrobial Coatings Touch, Airborne Particulate Monitor Status Check, DOSIS Main Box LED Check, Food Acceptability Survey, ISS Experience Recording, Packed Bed Reactor Experiment Historical Documentation Photos, SAMS CU HD Swap Load, Standard Measures Post-sleep Questionnaire, Time experiment science

IROSA Prep Tool Configuration
SAMS CU HD Swap Load
WHC Manual Fill
Saturday, February 20 (GMT 051)


EVA PGT TAK Calibration
EVA Battery Operations Terminal Charge Terminate
Today’s Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

Antimicrobial Coatings Touch
Combustion Integrated Rack Bottle Gather
Combustion Integrated Rack Manifold #2 Bottle Replacement
Combustion Integrated Rack Manifold #4 Bottle Replacement
Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Close
Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Open
Cygnus Capture Review
ExtraVehicular Activity (EVA) HD EMU Camera (HECA) Configuration Part 1
ExtraVehicular Activity (EVA) HD EMU Camera (HECA) Configuration Part 2
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Lithium Rechargeable (EVA) Battery Assembly (LREBA) Operations (OPS) Initiation (INIT)
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Procedure Conference
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Procedure Review
Extravehicular activity intravehicular crew review
Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Long Life Battery (LLB) Initiate
On-board Training (OBT) Cygnus Offset Grapple
Plant Water Management MWA Prep
Plant Water Management Setup
Plant Water Management-Soil Prime and Operations
Rechargeable EVA Battery Assembly (REBA) Powered Hardware Checkout
Urine Transfer System Offload EDV Swap
USB Flash Drive to be removed from ICF
Wet Lab-2 One-Step Gene Sampler Closeout
Wet Lab-2 One-Step Gene Sampler SSC Cleanup

SpaceRef co-founder, entrepreneur, writer, podcaster, nature lover and deep thinker.