Space Stations

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 7 August 2018 – Helping Student Research

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
August 8, 2018
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 7 August 2018 – Helping Student Research
Expedition 56 Flight Engineer Ricky Arnold works with a student-designed experiment using NanoRacks commercial science hardware. The study is researching the impacts of microgravity on tissue regeneration, concrete properties, antibiotics, and growth of plant, fungi, and bacteria. The research introduces students to the principles of space science. Credit: NASA.

The six-member Expedition 56 crew was busy Tuesday juggling science hardware maintenance and a variety of research work. The orbital residents are also helping students contribute to space research and testing an ancient navigation technique.
A cancer study wrapped up last week and astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor stowed the life science gear today used during operations inside the Microgravity Science Glovebox. The AngieX Cancer Therapy experiment looked at endothelial cells as a potential test model for developing safer and more effective vascular-targeted drugs. The research samples were sent back to Earth Friday inside the SpaceX Dragon cargo craft for scientific analysis.

Commander Drew Feustel and Flight Engineer Ricky Arnold are getting a pair of tiny satellites, known as SPHERES, ready for a student competition. Middle school students in the United States are competing to write the best algorithms that will operate the SPHERES simulating a mission on Saturn’s moon Enceladus.

German astronaut Alexander Gerst of ESA (European Space Agency) explored using a sextant with star maps as an emergency form of navigation in space. The study will provide insights that mission planners will use on future Orion spaceflight missions farther away from Earth.

On-Orbit Status Report

Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) Moderate Temperature Loop (MTL) Leak Update: The JEM MTL leak continues with the rate of 20 mL/day. On Friday, the crew completed a visual inspection of the Gas Trap Bypass Valve in the JEM Thermal Control System (TCS)2 rack but were unable to find evidence of a leak. They also isolated the Multi-purpose Small Payload Rack (MSPR)1 and MSPR2 racks from the JEM MTL line. The leak continued over the weekend, however, exonerating those racks as the leak source. Today the crew isolate EXPRESS Rack #5 as teams continue to search for the source of the leak.

Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments (ACME): The crew replaced the Combustion Integrated Rack (CIR) manifold bottles today to support the second part of the Coflow Laminar Diffusion (CLD) Flames investigation that began during the previous increment pair. The ACME experiment series being performed in the CIR includes five independent studies of gaseous flames. CLD Flames is one of the five independent studies with an overall goal to improve our understanding of the physical and chemical processes controlling diffusion flame structure and lifting phenomena and to provide for rigorous testing of numerical models, including thermal radiation, soot formation, and detailed chemical kinetics. Such understanding allows for detailed computational predictions of pollutant formation and enables the improvement of combustion efficiency and reduction of pollutant emission in practical terrestrial combustion. The primary goals of ACME are to improve fuel efficiency and reduce pollutant production in routine fuel combustion activities on Earth. Its secondary goal is to improve spacecraft fire prevention through innovative research focused on materials flammability.

Fluid Shifts: To prepare for tomorrow’s Fluid Shifts Imaging Measurement test, today the crew setup the Cerebral and Cochlear Fluid Pressure (CCFP) analyzer hardware and performed a CCFP functional checkout and data transfer. Fluid Shifts is a NASA investigation, divided into Dilution Measurements, Baseline Imaging, and Baseline Imaging with Chibis (Lower Body Negative Pressure). The Fluid Shifts experiment investigates the causes for severe and lasting physical changes to astronaut’s eyes. Because the head ward fluid shift is a hypothesized contributor to these changes, reversing this fluid shift with a lower body negative pressure device is being evaluated as a possible intervention. Results from this study may help to develop preventative measures against lasting changes in vision and to prevention of eye damage.

Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) Protein Crystal Growth (PCG) 13: Today the crew removed and stowed the CO2 incubator and meter from the Space Automated Bioproduct Laboratory (SABL) and completed a hard drive swap to prepare the facility for CASIS PCG 13 activities next week. CASIS PCG 13 seeks to enhance the way crystals are grown in a microgravity environment by allowing crew members to observe imperfections within a crystal and make real-time adjustments to follow-up experiments, rather than returning a sample to Earth and relaunching to try again. This dramatically reduces the time it takes to conduct an experiment aboard the space station and creates a timely, realistic and more cost-effective solution for prospective researchers.

AngieX Cancer Therapy: In conclusion of last week’s AngieX Cancer Therapy activities, today the crew removed and stowed the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG) life science hardware used to conduct the investigation. The AngieX investigation examines whether endothelial cells cultured in microgravity represent a valid in vitro model to test effects of vascular-targeted agents on normal blood vessels. AngieX has developed a treatment that targets both tumor cells and vasculature, but needs a better model on which to test it. This study may facilitate development of a cost-effective method that does not require animal testing and which may help develop safer and more effective vascular-targeted drugs.

MagVector 3D: The crew performed two sample exchanges for ESA’s MagVector 3D sample yesterday. Twelve different samples will be processed on the ISS. MagVector supports a study of how Earth’s magnetic field interacts with an electrical conductor. Using extremely sensitive magnetic sensors placed around and above a conductor, researchers can gain insight into ways that the magnetic field influences how conductors work. This research is expected to help improve future ISS experiments and electrical experiments, and could offer insights into how magnetic fields influence electrical conductors in general.

Barrios Protein Crystal Growth (PCG): Yesterday the crew retrieved a Barrios PCG microplate from a Minus Eighty Degree Celsius Laboratory Freezer for ISS (MELFI) and inserted the samples into the Space Automated Bioproduct Laboratory (SABL). Barrios PCG focuses on the successful transfer and mixing of different solutions into commercial off-the-shelf multiwell plates. Video of the growth of the protein crystals in the multiwell plates will be downlinked for evaluation.

Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites (SPHERES) Zero Robotics: Today the crew set up cameras for the SPHERES Zero Robotics investigation and completed a dry run session. The SPHERES-Zero-Robotics investigation establishes an opportunity for high school students to design research for the ISS. As part of a competition, students write algorithms for the SPHERES satellites to accomplish tasks relevant to future space missions. The algorithms are tested by the SPHERES team and the best designs are selected for the competition to operate the SPHERES satellites on board the ISS.

Microbial Tracking-2 (MT-2): Today the crew collected saliva and body samples for the Microbial Tracking-2 investigation and placed them inside a MELFI. MT-2 monitors the different types of microbes that are present on ISS over a 1-year period. After the samples are returned to Earth, a molecular analysis of the RNA and DNA will be conducted to identify the specific microbes that are present on ISS in order to understand the microbial flora diversity on the ISS and how it changes over time.

Sextant Navigation: Today the crew calibrated the sextant and then performed the second session for the Sextant Navigation investigation. This session will emphasize position stabilization and sighting. Following data collection, the crew will record the results and stow the equipment. The Sextant Navigation investigation focuses on stability and star sighting opportunities in microgravity. Astronauts onboard the ISS test a hand-held sextant that is intended for use on future Orion exploration missions. The results from this investigation can aid in the development of emergency navigation methods for future manned spacecraft. Historically, Gemini missions in 1965-66 were the first to exercise sextant sightings from a spacecraft. A sextant was built into Apollo vehicles as a navigation backup in case of lost communications.

Preparation for H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV)-7 Rack Relocations: This week the crew will execute a series of activities in order to prepare ISS for the installation of new racks arriving on HTV-7. Today the crew reviewed procedures, cleared stowage from rack fronts in the Permanent Multipurpose Module (PMM) and reorganize stowage in the Japanese Experiment Logistics Module – Pressurized Section (JLP) and Japanese Logistic Module (JPM). These activities, coupled with tomorrow’s continued disassembly of the decommissioned Muscle Atrophy Resistive Exercise System (MARES) rack in the PMM, will enable the crew to transfer five racks within ISS on Thursday.

Mobile Servicing System (MSS) Operations: Overnight, robotics ground controllers used the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) to survey cable configurations in the S0 Bay 1 area for ExtraVehicular Activity (EVA) planning. Once complete, specialists executed a walk-off from the Node 2 Power Data Grapple Fixture (PDGF) to Mobile Base System (MBS) PDGF 4, translated the Mobile Transporter (MT) from Worksite (WS)6 to WS7, and unstowed Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM). SSRMS remains in a park position in preparation for tonight’s activity to break torque on Channel 2A battery bolts in preparation for the upcoming HTV-7 Battery R&R EVAs.

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

Microbial Tracking-2 Saliva Collection
Microbial Tracking-2 Sample MELFI Insert
Regenegation of Micropurification unit (БМП) Ф2 cartridge (begin)
Auxiliary Computer System [ВКС] Laptops Antivirus Software Checkout and Report
Acoustic Monitor Setup for Crew Worn Measurements
AngieX Cancer Therapy MSG Hardware Teardown
In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Rack Transfer Procedure Review
PCG11 HDPCG Relocate
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) – JEM
Soyuz 739 Kazbek Fit Check
Progress 438 [AO] Stowage and IMS Ops
PMM Rack Front Stowage Remove
Preparing Orlan Comm and Telemetry Assets
JLP Stowage Remove
AngieX Cancer Therapy SABL CO2 Meter Setup
Checkout of BETA-09 Data Output Device (УСИ) using KMA-01.
Orlan-MKS No.4 and No.5, БСС, comm, and biomed parameters telemetry check.
Reconfigure comm for nominal ops
Checking БД-2 treadmill carriage position
Chemical Gardens MWA Preparation
Chemical Gardens Mix Ops
iPad CrewNet Update Prep
Express Rack 5 MTL Isolation
Microbial Tracking-2 Body Sample Questionnaire
Microbial Tracking-2 Body Sample Collection
AngieX Cancer Therapy SABL CO2 Meter Teardown and Stow
Microbial Tracking-2 Sample MELFI Insert
Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Water Recovery System (WRS) Sample Analysis
Chemical Gardens Mix Ops
SPHERES Zero Robotics Setup
Biomolecule Extraction and Sequencing Technology (BEST) Swabbing Operations
Columbus A/C Inverter R&R
Sextant Navigation Session 2 Operations
BEST MELFI Sample Insertion into a Box Module
Verification of ИП-1 Flow Sensor Position
Charging GoPro HERO3 Camcorder Batteries (No.11 and No.12) in Soyuz 738 (start)
SPHERES Zero Robotics Dry Run
Filling (separation) of ЕДВ (КОВ) for Elektron-VM or ЕДВ-СВ
Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Open
Combustion Integrated Rack Manifold #2 Bottle Replacement
MERLIN 2 Desiccant Swap
СОЖ Maintenance
Public Affairs Office (PAO) High Definition (HD) Config Node 2 Camcorder for JEM Event
SPHERES Zero Robotics Shutdown
Fluid Shifts CCFP Baseline Setup
Combustion Integrated Rack Manifold #4 Bottle Replacement
Cleaning FGB ЦВ1 Circulation Fan Guard Screen
PAO Preparation
Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in High Definition (HD) – Node 2 Camcorder towards JEM
Fluid Shifts CCFP Functional Checkout
FGB Gas Analyzer Vacuum Cleaning
Acoustic Monitor Battery Swap
Fluid Shifts Hardware Battery Installation
BCAT image Transfer
Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Close
Fluid Shifts DPOAE Settings Change
METEOR Laptop Recovery [Deferred]
Dust collectors ПC1, ПС1 filter cleaning by vacuum cleaner in FGB (panels 203, 403)
BCAT Shutdown
INTERACTION-2. Experiment Ops
IMS Update
Space Automated Bioproduct Lab, CO2 Incubator Removal
CONTENT. Experiment Ops
Charging GoPro HERO3 Camcorder Batteries (No.11 and No.12) in Soyuz 738 (end)
Space Automated Bioproduct Lab, Hard Drive Swap
iPad CrewNet Update Post
Rodent Research Water Box and Light Check
Wastewater Storage Tank Assembly (WSTA) Fill
Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Sample Data Record

Completed Task List Activities:
ESA Columbus MLU6 R&R [Completed GMT 217]
WHC KTO Replace [Completed GMT 217]
CrewNet OBT CDR [Completed GMT 216]
Educational Recording [Completed GMT 216]

Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.
SPCH – tie Channel 3A (master) to Channel 2A
BGA Latching
MSS – HTV-7 Get-Ahead Robotics Tasks
MCA Full Cal
CDRA Swap from LAB to Node 3
Amine Swingbed Activation
Increment 55 Plaque Hanging Ceremony

Three-Day Look Ahead:
Wednesday, 08/08: CAL Fiber Optic Troubleshooting, Rack Relocation Ops, Acoustic Monitor Ops, Fluid Shifts Scan, SEXTANT Ops, Microscope SABL Camera Checkout, PEPS Inspection
Thursday, 08/09: Rack Transfers, SPHERES TSLOSH Run, MagVector Umbilical Disconnect
Friday, 08/10: SPHERES Zero Robotics, ACME Controller R&R, ACE Sample Swap, Hatch Seal Inspection, Rodent Research 7 Ops, JSSOD Satellite Deploy

QUICK ISS Status – Environmental Control Group:
Component – Status
Elektron – On
Vozdukh – Manual
[СКВ] 1 – SM Air Conditioner System (“SKV1”) – Off
[СКВ] 2 – SM Air Conditioner System (“SKV2”) – Off
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Lab – Standby
Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) Node 3 – Operate
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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