Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 3 August 2017 – Installing NanoRack Platforms in the Kibo Module

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
August 8, 2017
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 3 August 2017 – Installing NanoRack Platforms in the Kibo Module
Astronauts Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer work on station systems inside Japan’s Kibo laboratory module. Credit: NASA

From leg muscle scans to observing materials burning at high temperatures, the Expedition 52 crew continued researching what happens when you live in space. The space residents also upgraded electronics gear and installed new science racks.
Astronauts Randy Bresnik and Paolo Nespoli are barely a week into their 4-1/2 month long mission and are already exploring what space is doing to their bodies. The astronauts took ultrasound scans of their legs today to assess the changes their leg muscles and tendons are undergoing. The data will later be compared to the condition of their muscles before and after their spaceflight mission.

Jack Fischer of NASA installed new electronics gear in a science rack to speed up the communications rate at which data is uploaded and downloaded from the research facility. Station veteran Peggy Whitson swapped out samples exposed to high temperatures inside a specialized furnace. She later installed a pair of NanoRacks research platforms in the Kibo laboratory module. The commercial science devices will support upcoming experiments being delivered on the next SpaceX Dragon mission.

On-Orbit Status Report

Sarcolab-3: With assistance from an operator, a USOS crewmember ingressed the Muscle Atrophy Research & Exercise System (MARES) chair in the Columbus module, installed the Electromyograph and Percutaneous Electrical Stimulation (PEMS) device and adjusted pads and constraints for the Sarcolab-3 ankle protocol. The operator then collected ultrasound images of the subject’s right leg during exercise activities. Ground experts are evaluating anomalies that occurred during the investigation that prevented completion of today’s session. Later in the day a crewmember installed the mechanisms specific to the knee configuration for Sarcolab-3 operations tomorrow. The data collected for Sarcolab-3 will be compared to pre and post flight measurements to assess the impact of hypothesized microgravity induced muscle loss. Myotendinous and Neuromuscular Adaptation to Long-term Spaceflight (Sarcolab) investigates the adaptation and deterioration of the soleus (calf muscle) where it joins the Achilles tendon, which links it to the heel and carries loads from the entire body. Muscle fiber samples are taken from crew members before and after flight and analyzed for changes in structural and chemical properties. MRI and ultrasound tests and electrode stimulation are conducted to help assess muscle and tendon changes caused by microgravity exposure.

Electrostatic Levitation Furnace (ELF): The crew replaced sample cartridges in the ELF, an experimental facility designed to levitate, melt and solidify materials by containerless processing techniques using the Electrostatic Levitation method. With this facility, thermophysical properties of high temperature melts can be measured, and solidification from deeply undercooled melts can be achieved.

NanoRacks Platforms 2 and 3: The crew installed NanoRacks Platform 2 and 3 in the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) to support investigation hardware arriving on SpaceX-12. These NanoRack platforms are multipurpose research facilities that provide power and data transfer capabilities for NanoRacks Module investigations.

Improved Payload Ethernet Hub Gateway (iPEHG): The crew installed an iPEHG in Express Rack (ER) 4. The new iPEHG design corrects performance limitations often experienced by the older PEHGs.

Mobile Servicing System (MSS) Operations: Yesterday afternoon, Robotics Ground Controllers translated the Mobile Transporter (MT) from Worksite 8 (WS8) to WS4. They then stowed Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM) on Mobile Base System (MBS) Power Data Grapple Fixture 2 (PDGF2) and walked the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) off MBS PDGF3 onto the Lab PDGF.

Today’s Planned Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.

Express Rack 4 Rotate Prep
Fine Motor Skills Experiment Test – Subject
Measuring Partial CO Pressure in RS using US portable CSA-CP device
Gathering EVA-43 Equipment and Tools. Consolidation of EVA bundles.
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) sample Cartridge Retrieval
MARES Ankle Shaving Preparation
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) Chamber Clean
Ultrasound 2 HRF Rack 2 Power On
MARES Ultrasound Session Assistance
MARES Ultrasound session
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) sample Cartridge Installation
PEHG Hardware Install
MARES subject electrodes equipment
Ultrasound 2 Guided Data Export
MARES subject electrodes equipment assistance
BIOCARD. Experiment Session (assist)
BIOCARD. Experiment Session
Space Automated Bioproduct Lab Filter Clean
Handover of Increment 52 Crew
Human Research Facility Ultrasound 2 power off and stowage
MARES Power On and Battery Charge
CALCIUM. Experiment Session 10
Inspection and photography of SM window shutters
SARCOLAB. MARES knee configuration installation
Express Rack 4 Umbilical Mate
Habitability Human Factors Directed Observations – Subject
Long Duration Sorbent Testbed Status Check.
Rodent Research Access Unit Clean
MARES Battery Charge control
MELFI 1 Switch Repair
CIR Hardware Gather
NanoRacks Platform-2 Install
NanoRacks Platform-3 Install
Two-Phase Flow (TPF) Experiment Laptop Terminal 2 (ELT2) Setup
Multi-purpose Small Payload Rack (MSPR) Two-Phase Flow Experiment Equipment Activation
Robot Startup

Completed Task List Items

Ground Activities
All activities were completed unless otherwise noted.
ER4 iPEHG install support
SSRMS 50S Starboard survey

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Friday, 08/04: Dragon OBT, RR5 fixative swap, Cupola window #6 scratch pane R&R
Saturday, 08/05: RR5 fixative swap, housekeeping
Sunday, 08/06: RR5 fixative swap, crew off duty

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