Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 24 July, 2020 – A Busy Week

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
August 1, 2020
Filed under , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 24 July, 2020 – A Busy Week
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 24 July, 2020 - A Busy Week.

The Expedition 63 crew has started the weekend following a spacewalk and a same-day delivery this week to resupply the International Space Station.
Two NASA astronauts are also getting ready to return to Earth after a two-month stay in space.

Commander Chris Cassidy cleaned water loops today inside the U.S. spacesuits he and Flight Engineer Bob Behnken wore during Tuesday’s five-hour and 29-minute spacewalk. The skilled astronaut has chalked up 10 career spacewalks gaining nearly 55 hours of external lab maintenance experience. This was also the tenth spacewalk for Behnken netting him just over 61 hours of service outside the station.

Behnken is now turning his attention to readying the SpaceX Crew Dragon vehicle that will return he and fellow NASA astronaut Doug Hurley to Earth at the beginning of August. They will undock from the Harmony module’s international docking adapter on Aug. 1. The duo will splashdown on Aug. 2 ending NASA’s first crewed mission aboard a commercial spacecraft.

Behnken and Hurley packed clothing, personal items and other gear today inside the Crew Dragon. The two astronauts also tried on a specialized suit to help their bodies adapt to the conditions of Earth’s gravity upon their return.

Five spaceships are parked at the station after Thursday’s arrival of Russia’s Progress 76 (76P) resupply ship less than three-and-half hours after launch. Veteran cosmonaut Anatoly Ivanishin has begun unpacking some of the nearly three tons of cargo delivered aboard the 76P. Fellow Roscosmos cosmonaut Ivan Vagner assisted with the cargo transfers and updated the station’s inventory management system.

On-Orbit Status Report


Spectrum: The crew performed a shutdown of the Spectrum hardware after the ground teams performed a checkout. The hardware will be used to process samples arriving on NG-14. Spectrum takes fluorescent images of biological specimens contained within a controlled environment. A high resolution, monochrome camera captures images of fluoresced proteins of plants within Petri plates. Ground crews control the growth lighting, CO2 levels, and ethylene levels within the Spectrum’s research chamber over a typical 12-day growth period while routinely capturing images and telemetering these images back to Earth.

Astrobee: The crew performed a powerdown of the Astrobee free flyers. Astrobee is made up of three free-flying, cube-shaped robots which are designed to help scientists and engineers develop and test technologies for use in microgravity to assist astronauts with routine chores, and give ground controllers additional eyes and ears on the space station. The autonomous robots, powered by fans and vision-based navigation, perform crew monitoring, sampling, logistics management, and accommodate up to three investigations.

Fluids Integrated Rack/Light Microscopy Module (FIR/LMM)/CDM changeout: As a continuation of the CDM experiment, the crew installed the last of the ten experiment modules on the FIR/LMM. Capillary-Driven Microfluidics in Space (Capillary Driven Microfluidics) examines the drawing of fluids into a tiny narrow tube in microgravity. Results may improve current mathematical models and understanding of microfluidic systems and improve fluid control in various devices. Diagnostic devices require separation of blood cells and plasma, which have different densities, and the absence of sedimentation and buoyancy-driven convection in microgravity improves the efficiency of this separation.


Extravehicular Mobility Units (EMU) 3004/3006 Loop Scrub, and Iodination: The crew performed EMU water loop scrubs and then acquired and tested water samples for conductivity on units 3004 and 3006. EMU Loop Scrubs are required preventive maintenance needed to remove any chemical and biological contaminants from the EMU transport loop.

EHS Benzene Chip Measurement System (CMS) Operations: Progress 76 (76P) delivered two Draeger Chip Measurement System (CMS) handheld devices along with 90 benzene specific chips that will be used for benzene detection on orbit after the Air Quality Monitor (AQM) failed in mid-June. Today, the crew took benzene measurements in the LAB and SM using both CMS readers to perform initial characterization.

European Drawer Rack 2 (EDR2) Launch Structure Removal: Today, the crew removed launch structure components from the EDR2 rack in the Columbus Module. The EDR2 rack was delivered on H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV9) in late May. The crew removed 32 guides from the EDR2 rack structure, which were used to support cargo transfer bags (CTBs) during EDR2 launch. Cargo within the EDR2 rack was relocated to allow the crew access to remove the guides. The rear plates and support panels remain mounted to create stowage spaces. The crew returned the temporarily stowed cargo to the EDR2 rack following the guide removal.

Pump Fan Motor Controller (PFMC) Removal: The crew removed the PFMC from the failed Node 2 Moderate Temperature Loop (MTL) Pump Package Assembly (PPA) which was previously replaced in late May. The PFMC will be returned to the ground for testing, while the PPA will be transferred to HTV9 for disposal.

Mobile Servicing System (MSS) Operations: Yesterday, robotics ground controllers (ROBO) powered up the MSS and maneuvered the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) to perform a survey of the International Docking Adapter (IDA) #3 with the SSRMS cameras. ROBO then maneuvered the SSRMS to walk off to the Node2 PDGF to unstow the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM). This configured the MSS in a position to perform the Space-X Demo2 Thermal Protection Survey (TPS) today.

Completed Task List Activities:

EVA Tool Stow (ongoing)
Portable O2 Monitor (POM) Calibration
Light Locate
Today’s Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

MSS Survey of Crew Dragon
Node 3 CDRA supplemental half cycles for METOX regeneration
Ground Support for EMU Loop Scrubs
Look Ahead Plan

Saturday, 7/25 (GMT 207)

HRF Saliva Collect (NASA)

IMV Split Atmosphere Ops
EHS Benzene CMS Ops
EVA METOX Regen Term
Sunday, 7/26 (GMT 208)

HRF Saliva Collect (NASA)

Crew Off Duty
Monday, 7/27 (GMT 209)

Astrobee On (NASA)
Colloidal Clusters Ops (JAXA)
NRCSD-18 Removal (NASA)
BioMole ACO Mini PCR Placement (NASA)

EMU Loop Scrub
IFM QD Cleaning
EMU Swap
Recycle Tank Drain/Fill
Today’s Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

HRF Generic Saliva & Urine Collection
Environmental Health System (EHS) Benzene Big Picture Words Review
EHS Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Calibration Check & Data Record
EDR2 Launch Structure removal – GUIDES only
In-Flight Maintenance Pump Package Assembly (PPA) Pump Fan Motor Controller (PFMC) Removal
Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Cooling Loop Maintenance Scrub & Iodination
Checking ???-? No.07 thermostat temperature in MRM2 and unobstructed area near inlet/outlet vents
Progress 444 (DC1) priority and US cargo transfers and IMS Ops
Pressurization of Elektron-VM Liquid Unit before Activation
Health Maintenance System (HMS) ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) – JEM
Program Management/ISS Crew Conference
Countermeasures System (CMS) Orthostatic Intolerance Garment (OIG) Fit Check
Capillary Driven Microfluidics Plate Changeout
Crew Departure Preparations for Return to Earth
Health Maintenance System (HMS) Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool for Windows (WinSCAT) Test
Photography of traces left by the Active Docking Mechanism probe on DC1 Passive Docking Assembly receiving cone
Downlink of Docking Cone internal surface photos via OCA
Unstow of 76P items
Photography of Plume Impingement and Deposit Monitoring Unit [????] position on MRM2 through SM window No.13
Maintenance of hatch sealing mechanisms of DC1 Passive Docking Assembly [???] and Progress 444 Active Docking Assembly [ACA]
EHS Benzene Chip Measurement System (CMS) Operations
SM and LAB air sampling using ??-1? sampler
Astrobee Off
ODF update using Progress 444 delivered files
ISS HAM Radio Power Up
Inventory Management System (IMS) Conference
Food Physiology MELFI Sample Transfer
Spectrum Power Down
Environmental Health System (EHS) Grab Sample Container (GSC) Sampling Operations
JEM Stowage Consolidation for NG-14
Benzene Chip MELFI Initial Insert
Metal Oxide (METOX) Regeneration Ops

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