Space Stations

NASA Space Station Status Report 19 April, 2022 – Saying Farewell to the Ax-1 Crew

By Marc Boucher
Status Report
April 19, 2022
Filed under , , ,
NASA Space Station Status Report 19 April, 2022 – Saying Farewell to the Ax-1 Crew
Saying Farewell to the Ax-1 Crew.

Commander Tom Marshburn of NASA joined his six Expedition 67 flight engineers and held a farewell ceremony for the four-member Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) crew on Tuesday morning.
At the same time back on Earth, four SpaceX Crew-4 astronauts arrived at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to prepare for their launch to the International Space Station this weekend.

Marshburn called down to Mission Control today to recognize the contribution the four Ax-1 private astronauts have made to human spaceflight. The private quartet then spoke about the research and education events they conducted and thanked the Expedition 67 crew for hosting and guiding them during their 10-day stay on the station. Ax-1 Commander Michael Lopez-Alegria will lead Pilot Larry Connor and Mission Specialists Mark Pathy and Eytan Stibbe back to Earth inside the SpaceX Dragon Endeavour. They will undock from the Harmony module’s space-facing port at 10 p.m. EDT today live on NASA TV on NASA’s website and the app. The foursome will splashdown off the coast of Florida on Wednesday afternoon.

The current seven-member Expedition 67 crew will sleep in on Wednesday following the late night departure of the Ax-1 crew. The four astronauts and three cosmonauts will get right back to work on Thursday with more science and maintenance. Marshburn and NASA Flight Engineers Raja Chari and Kayla Barron along with ESA (European Space Agency) Flight Engineer Matthias Maurer will also check out their Crew Dragon suits ahead of their departure aboard the SpaceX Dragon Endurance in a couple of weeks. Roscosmos Flight Engineers Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveev, and Sergey Korsakov will tend to their complement of Russian space research and lab upkeep tasks.

The station will stay at a seven-member crew status for just a few days until the arrival of the SpaceX Crew-4 mission. Four commercial crew astronauts representing NASA and ESA are scheduled to launch at 5:26 a.m. EDT on Saturday from Kennedy inside the SpaceX Dragon Freedom crew ship and dock to the same port vacated by the Ax-1 mission on Sunday at 6 a.m. The quartet commanded by NASA’s Kjell Lindgren, with Pilot Robert Hines and Mission Specialists Jessica Watkins of NASA and ESA’s Samantha Cristoforetti, will live and work aboard the orbiting lab for just over four-and-a-half months. The Crew-4 astronauts will become Expedition 67 flight engineers after they open the hatches and enter the space station.

On-Orbit Status Report

Private Astronaut Mission (PAM) Axiom-1 (Ax-1):

Public Affairs Office (PAO) and Imagery Activities: The Ax-1 crew performed an imagery data transfer of all remaining images from Axiom’s D6 Nikon Camera and participated in a live farewell ceremony with the ISS crew.

Ax-1 Undock Preparations: The Ax-1 crew performed cargo packing in preparation for undock; however, today’s undock and landing were waived off due to poor weather at the landing site. Teams are assessing weather and phasing for future undock opportunities.


Cold Atom Lab (CAL): A visual inspection was performed of the CAL moderate temperature loop (MTL) coolant hose, and any fluid observed was cleaned up. The CAL produces clouds of atoms that are chilled to about one ten billionth of a degree above absolute zero — much colder than the average temperature of deep space. At these low temperatures, atoms have almost no motion, allowing scientists to study fundamental behaviors and quantum characteristics that are difficult or impossible to probe at higher temperatures. In microgravity, researchers may be able to achieve even colder temperatures than what is possible on the ground and observe these cold atom clouds for longer periods of time.

Crew Interactive MObile companioN (CIMON): The crew recorded a video tour of the ISS in German. The Pilot Study with CIMON is a technology demonstration project and an observational study that aims to obtain the first insights into the effects on crew support by an artificial intelligence (AI), in terms of efficiency and acceptance during long-term missions in space. Spaceflight missions put the crew under a substantial amount of stress and workload, and it is thought that AI could provide operational support to crewmembers.

Collapsible Contingency Urinal (CCU): As part of an on-going series of tests, the crew used the CCU system. The CCU is exploration hardware flown to ISS as a tech demo. The approach includes a fractal wetting design that incorporates smart capillary fluidics. This work could have a broad impact on capillary-based fluid management on spacecraft and Earth.

Lumina: A crewmember used Bluetooth to transfer data from Lumina device and to change parameters via the EveryWear App on the crew’s tablet. Fiber-optic Active Dosimeter (Lumina) is an active fiber dosimeter that monitors, in real-time, the received radiation dose by exploiting the capacity of optical fibers to darken when exposed to radiation. The dosimeter provides reliable dose measurements in complex environments such as the ones associated with electrons, protons, gamma-ray or X-ray photons, or neutrons.

Solid Combustion Experiment Module (SCEM): A crewmember connected the SCEM Gas Quick Disconnect (QD) to the Multi-purpose Small Payload Rack (MSPR) Gas QD. The SCEM is designed to investigate the oxygen concentration required to sustain a flame over solid fuels. It is also possible to obtain the limiting electric current caused by self-ignition of the insulated wires due to short-circuit. Combustion characteristics of solid materials in the microgravity environment where no buoyancy-induced convection occurs will be identified, as well as the effect of gravity on the combustion limit of solid materials, through studies by SCEM.

Photocatalyst (Ax-1): A crewmember performed a filter check on the Photocatalyst Device and Photocatalyst Control Device. Photocatalyst during the Ax-1 PAM demonstrates using a photocatalyst device to clean the cabin air and remove odor caused by volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The device converts VOCs into carbon dioxide and water. The device and a non-photocatalyst control device will operate for at least four weeks before returning to Earth for analysis of the photocatalyst device’s effectiveness.


Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Urine Receptacle (UR) and Insert Filter (IF) Remove and Replace (R&R): Today, the crew conducted routine maintenance to R&R the UR and IF. As part of the R&R, the crew cleaned the WHC power supply, reactivated WHC, and performed a functionality test to verify the WHC was operational following the maintenance.

RS Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Tool Transfer and Battery Stowage: Today, the RS crew uninstalled the Lithium-Ion Rechargeable EVA Battery Assembly (LREBA) batteries from the Orlan suits used in yesterday’s RS EVA #52 and handed them over to the USOS crew to charge. After receiving the batteries, the USOS crew installed the batteries in the battery stowage compartment.

Environmental Health System (EHS) Total Organic Carbon Analyzer (TOCA) Potable Water Dispenser (PWD) Sample Collect and Analysis: As part of regular maintenance, the crew performed periodic EHS water sampling by collecting water samples from the PWD for in-flight and post-flight analysis. In-flight samples were used to perform a TOCA analysis that measures the amounts of organic constituents in the potable water. The crew also tested the water samples for the presence of Coliform bacteria utilizing a Coliform test bag. These tests are used to determine if the drinking water is still safe for crew consumption.

Regenerative Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) Recycle Tank Drain/Fill: The recycle tank was set up to drain via the Urine Processor Assembly (UPA) Fill Drain Valve into a Brine EDV using the Urine Transfer System (UTS). Following the setup, the ground performed the tank drain using the UTS. Once the ground specialists completed the transfer, the crew verified the recycle tank was empty, terminated the drain, repositioned the fill/drain valve to force fill the recycle tank using UTS, and configured for nominal processing operations.

WHC Manual Fill Initiation and Termination: Today, the crew initiated a manual fill of the WHC E??-?? (Water Container) using a Post-Flight Analysis Bag to capture any pressure relief to protect the dose pump. The ???-CB is intended for short-term storage and manual water transportation between facilities. After successfully filling the E??-??, the crew returned the WHC to nominal use.

Completed Task List Activities:

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

LAB Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Zero Calibration
Regenerative ECLSS Recycle Tank Drain/Fill Support
Crew Dragon Endeavour Undock Support Commanding [Deferred]
Look Ahead Plan

Wednesday, April 20 (GMT 110)

Myotones Blood Setup

Re-planning of Tasks is in Work
Ax-1 Undock Preparations
Thursday, April 21 (GMT 111)

APM Status Check
CIMON Battery Stow
Food Physiology Diet Brief
HRF Centrifuge Check Out
MELFI Ice Brick Stow
Myotones Measurements
Photocatalyst Filter Check (Ax-1/ISS)
Standard Measures Blood and Urine Collect
Vascular Aging Glucose Setup

Crew Dragon Suit Checkout
Dragon Pre-Departure Conference
EVA Camera Charging
Friday, April 22 (GMT 112)

AstroRad Vest Don
Cold Atom Lab MTL Jumper Leak Check
Myotones Sample MELFI Insertion
Photocatalyst Filter Check
Vascular Aging Blood Collection & Glucose Measurement

CQ Deck Cleaning
Crew Dragon Departure CBT and Conference
Crew Dragon Deorbit Paper Sim
Today’s Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

Crew-3 Departure Preparations for Return to Earth
ISS HAM Kenwood Radio Power Up
Photocatalyst Filter Check
CIMON Battery Charging
CIMON Unpack and Deployment on Bogen Arm
CIMON Setup with Batteries and Auto-connects with the Station WiFi
ISS Tour with CIMON Part 1
EHS TOCA PWD Sample Collect and Analysis
Regenerative ECLSS Tank Drain/Fill
Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Inspection
SCEM Gas QD Connection
CIMON Temporary Stowage
JAXA Payload Laptop Terminal 5 (PLT5) Relocation
PAO Event in HD in Node2
EHS Coliform Water Processing
Glacier Desiccant Swap
Lumina Data Transfer and Parameters Changes with EveryWear
PAO Event in JEM
CAL MTL Jumper Leak Check
EHS TOCA Sample Data Record
RS EVA Tool Transfer
PAM Facilitator Time
Li-Ion Batteries Installation into Battery Stowage Compartment
Systems Operations Data File (SODF) Update
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) Cable Handover
Photo/TV Axiom Media Card Gather [Deferred]
Set up Nominal Operations Cleaning Only AC Dry Vacuum Cleaner [Deferred]
WHC Manual Fill Initiation and Termination
Stow Nominal Operations Cleaning Only AC Dry Vacuum Cleaner [Deferred]
CCU Crew Use (Dual)
Dragon Station Support Computer (SSC) De-route [Deferred]
UTS Offload EDV Swap [Deferred]
GHF HICARI2 Cartridges Removal and Separation [Deferred]
Human Research Facility (HRF) Generic Urine Collection Setup
International Docking Adapter (IDA) Egress in Preparation for Ax-1 Departure [Deferred]
CQ Intermediate Cleaning [Deferred]
Sleep Station Relocate [Deferred]
SSC Relocate [Deferred]
Docking Dragon Monitoring Tools Setup [Deferred]
HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Hardware Setup
CCU Crew Use
Charging of ESA Power Bank
On-Board Training (OBT) for Crew-4 Rendezvous [In Work]
Photo/TV Axiom Card Stow [Deferred]
Myotones HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Hardware Setup [In Work]
Dragon Monitoring Tools Teardown [Deferred]

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