Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 May 2018 – Cygnus Launches

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
May 22, 2018
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 May 2018 – Cygnus Launches
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 May 2018 - Cygnus Launches.

Orbital ATK’s Antares rocket carrying the Cygnus cargo spacecraft lifted off at 4:44 a.m. EDT and is on its way to the International Space Station.
At the time of launch, the space station was traveling at an altitude of about 250 miles, over the central south Atlantic.

An hour and half after launch, commands will be given to deploy the spacecraft’s UltraFlex solar arrays.

The cargo ship will rendezvous with the International Space Station on Thursday, May 24. Expedition 55 Flight Engineer Scott Tingle will grapple the spacecraft at approximately 5:20 a.m. EDT, backed by Ricky Arnold, and Drew Feustel will monitor Cygnus systems during its approach. They will use the space station’s robotic Canadarm2 to take hold of the Cygnus, dubbed the S.S. James “J.R.” Thompson. After Cygnus’ capture, ground controllers will command the robotic arm to rotate and install Cygnus onto the station’s Unity module. It is scheduled depart the space station in mid-July.

Live coverage of the rendezvous and capture will air on NASA Television and the agency’s website beginning at 3:45 a.m. Thursday, May 24. Installation coverage is set to begin at 7:30 a.m.

Science investigations aboard Cygnus on their way to the space station also include commercial and academic payloads in myriad disciplines, including:

– The Biomolecule Extraction and Sequencing Technology (BEST), an investigation to identify unknown microbial organisms on the space station and understand how humans, plants and microbes adapt to living on the station

– The Cold Atom Laboratory, a physics research facility used by scientists to explore how atoms interact when they have almost no motion due to extreme cold temperatures

– A unique liquid separation system from Zaiput Flow Technologies that relies on surface forces, rather than gravity, to extract one liquid from another

– The Ice Cubes Facility, the first commercial European opportunity to conduct research in space, made possible through an agreement with ESA (European Space Agency) and Space Applications Services.

The Microgravity Investigation of Cement Solidification (MICS) experiment is to investigate and understand the complex process of cement solidification in microgravity with the intent of improving Earth-based cement and concrete processing and as the first steps toward making and using concrete on extraterrestrial bodies.

Three Earth science CubeSats

– RainCube (Radar in a CubeSat) will be NASA’s first active sensing instrument on a CubeSat that could enable future rainfall profiling missions on low-cost, quick-turnaround platforms.

– TEMPEST-D (Temporal Experiment for Storms and Tropical Systems Demonstration) is mission to validate technology that could improve our understanding of cloud processes.

– CubeRRT (CubeSat Radiometer Radio Frequency Interference Technology) will seek to demonstrate a new technology that can identify and filter radio frequency interference, which is a growing problem that negatively affects the data quality collected by radiometers, instruments used in space for critical weather data and climate studies.

On-Orbit Status Report

Orbital-ATK 9 (OA-9) Launch: OA-9 launched from the Wallops Flight Facility this morning at 08:44:06 GMT (3:44 CT). The Cygnus solar arrays have been deployed nominally. OA-9 capture and berthing to the ISS is planned for Thursday 24-May.

Atomization: This morning a crewmember set up and activated the Atomization hardware in the Multi-purpose Small Payload Rack (MSPR). The Atomization experiment investigates the disintegration processes of a low-speed water jet for various jet issue conditions in the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) to validate the new atomization concept by observing the process using a high speed camera. The knowledge gained can be applied to improve various engines utilizing spray combustion.

Human Research Program (Biochemical Profile, Repository and Cell Free Epigenome): A 54S crewmember collected blood and urine samples for his Flight Day 60 session of the Biochem Profile, Repository, and Cell Free Epigenome investigations. A 53S crewmember collected urine samples for his return next month to include 14-day session of the Biochem Profile and Repository investigations.

The Biochemical Profile investigation tests blood and urine samples obtained from astronauts before, during, and after spaceflight. Specific proteins and chemicals in the samples are used as biomarkers, or indicators of health. Post-flight analysis yields a database of samples and test results; which scientists can use to study the effects of spaceflight on the body.
Repository is a storage bank used to maintain biological specimens over extended periods of time and under well-controlled conditions. The repository supports scientific discovery that contributes to our fundamental knowledge in the area of human physiological changes and adaptation to a microgravity environment and provides unique opportunities to study longitudinal changes in human physiology spanning many missions.
The JAXA Cell Free Epigenome investigation tests blood samples collected from astronauts and cellular genes are analyzed. Blood carries molecular signals released from the cells inside the body. The analysis results provide insights to scientists on how human bodies function during space flight.
Probiotics: Today a crewmember collected saliva samples and stowed them in a Minus Eighty Degree Celsius Laboratory Freezer for ISS (MELFI). He also completed a questionnaire. Some species of harmful bacteria such as Salmonella grow stronger and more virulent in the microgravity environment of space. At the same time, the human immune system is weaker in space, leading to increased health risks. The objective of the Probiotics investigation is to study the impact of continuous consumption of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) on immune function and intestinal microbiota in astronauts in a closed microgravity environment. The results of this investigation may be used to support improvements in crew members’ intestinal microbiota and their immune function on long-duration space missions.

OA-9 Robotics Onboard Training: Earlier today, Robotics Ground Controllers powered up the MSS in support of the crew’s Cygnus Offset Grapple practice. During the Off Set Grapple activity, the crew used the PMM FRGF as the target to practice grapple approaches, maneuvering the SSRMS over the pin and practice pulling the trigger when they are in the grapple envelope. After the Offset Grapple training, the crew performed a Robotics Onboard Trainer (ROBoT) session. ROBoT is an on-orbit version of the ground-based Dynamics Skills Trainer (DST) that simulates robotics operations with graphical feedback.

OA-9 Arrival Preparations: In preparation for OA-9 capture and berthing on Thursday, the crew deployed, and perform a checkout of, the Centerline Berthing Camera System (CBCS) on the Node 1 Nadir hatch. Video from the CBCS will be used to aid Flight Controllers during Visiting Vehicle mating operations.

Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tether Inspections and Tool Configuration: Today the crew began the tool configurations necessary to support the upcoming US EVA #51 Node 2 EWC. They also inspected their 85ft Safety Tethers, Waist Tethers, and D-ring Extenders for structural integrity. The Node 2 EWC EVA is currently planned for June 14th.

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

HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Double Spin Collection
HRF Generic Urine Collection
??-8. Configuration Setup
Body Mass Measurement
HRF Generic Refrigerated Centrifuge Double Spin Configuration 1
Probiotics Saliva Operations
Body Mass Measurement – BMMD
MO-8. Equipment stowage
Probiotics Saliva Sample MELFI Insertion
HRF Generic Refrigerated Centrifuge Double Spin Configuration 2
Probiotics Question
HRF Generic Sample MELFI Insertion
HRF Generic Refrigerated Centrifuge Spin Conclude
Max Cycle Ergometer w/ Vibration Isolation & Stabilization (CEVIS) Portable PFS Partial Set Up
XF305 Camcorder Setup
Columbus Video Camera Assembly 1 Adjustment
Microgravity Measurement Apparatus (MMA) Laptop Terminal 2 (MLT2) Cable Reconfiguration
ISS Crew Departure Preparation
Columbus SUP2 Reconfiguration and MPCC Laptop-PWS1 Power Connection Swap
Max Cycle Ergometer w/Vibration Isolation & Stabilization (CEVIS) Portable PFS Power Up
Experiment Laptop Terminal 2 (ELT2) set up
Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis
Installation of the European IP Communication Laptop (Zbook) in Columbus [Aborted]
iPad Air 2 Update Prep
Atomization set up
Orthostatic Stability Evaluation with LBNP
Evaluation of Orthostatic Stability with LBNP (Operator)
Max Cycle Ergometer w/Vibration Isolation & Stabilization (CEVIS) Portable PFS
Installation of the Columbus Payload LAN Switch in Columbus [Aborted]
Activation of the Columbus Payload LAN Switch [Aborted]
COSMOCARD. 24hr electrocardiogram recording (prep + init).
HRF Generic Urine Collection Male Subject
VIZIR. Preparatory ops.
ISS Crew Departure Preparation
HRF Generic Sample MELFI Retrieval And Insertion Operations
Wanted Fluorescence Microscope Test Sample and Sample Holder
Centerline Berthing Camera System (CBCS) and Vestibule Outfitting Equipment Gather
Max Cycle Ergometer w/Vibration Isolation & Stabilization (CEVIS) Portable PFS Partial Stow
Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tool Configuring
Reconnecting SM KURS-P Cables from MRM2 Port Antenna Feeder to DC1 Port Antenna Feeder
Multi-purpose Small Payload Rack (MSPR) Component Activation for Atomization
On-board Training (OBT) Cygnus Offset Grapple
MATRYOSHKA-R. Replacing Personal Hygiene Items ??? and ???-3 in the Protective Screen PL Stores, Photography.
Preparation of Items for Return and Disposal with Soyuz 737
??? maintenance
IPEHG Hardware Gather
Microgravity Science Glovebox Activation
Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Sample Data Record
Max Cycle Ergometer w/Vibration Isolation & Stabilization (CEVIS) Portable PFS Conclude
US Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tether Inspection
VIZIR. Closeout Ops
On-board Training (OBT) Cygnus Robotics Onboard Trainer (ROBoT) Self-study Session
HRF Generic Sample MELFI Insertion Operations
Marrow Breath And Ambient Air Sample Setup – Subject
HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Setup
HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Conclude And Stow
IMS Delta File Prep
Metabolic Tracking MSG Life Science Hardware Teardown
MRM1-FGB Quick-Disconnect Screw Clamp Tightening
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Profile of Mood States (POMS) Questionnaire
Checking ??-2 treadmill carriage position. Photograph position of ??-2 carriage relative to pullout roller by lifting ??-2 curtain. Downlink photo via OCA.
Crew Departure Preparations for Return to Earth
Centerline Berthing Camera System (CBCS) Installation and Checkout
HRF Generic Urine Collection Male Subject
Single Stowage Locker Relocate
HRF Generic Sample MELFI Retrieval And Insertion Operations
Cygnus Cargo Operations Conference
Exercise Data Downlink via OCA

Completed Task List Activities
JAXA Report Part 8 [Completed GMT 140]

Ground Activities
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
SSRMS maneuver to ACBM position
CBCS Checkout
High Beta Powerdown
Solar Array configuration for High Beta

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Tuesday, 05/22: HRF Collect, EVA Prep (Loop Scrub, Cond Test, Tool cnfg), ACME H/W replace, Cygnus ROBOT OBT, KUBIK 6, Atomization, Neuromapping, Mouse item consolidate
Wednesday, 05/23: HRF Collect, MPCC, Cygnus OBT, SSK/MAS, EVA Tool cnfg, WinSCAT, Mouse Closeout, Glovebox Closeout, CBEF, Vascular Echo
Thursday, 05/24: Cygnus Rndz/Berth, Cygnus Hatch Open, CIR Bottle, Dosimeter deploy, MD print remove, JEM MLT2, Vascular Echo

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) – Standby
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Lab – Full Up
Trace Contaminant Control System (TCCS) Node 3 – Off

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