Space Stations

NASA Space Station Status Report 19 July, 2022 – Improving Water Recycling

By SpaceRef Editor
Status Report
July 20, 2022
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NASA Space Station Status Report 19 July, 2022 – Improving Water Recycling
Central Argentina is pictured from the International Space Station. (July 9, 2022)

A variety of new space science is under way aboard the International Space Station following Saturday’s delivery aboard the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship.

The Expedition 67 crew members are helping researchers on the ground take advantage of weightlessness to reveal new phenomena potentially benefitting humans on Earth and in space.

NASA Flight Engineer Bob Hines kicked off a new experiment today that looks at how the human immune system adapts to microgravity. Hines set up the Life Science Glovebox inside the Kibo laboratory module then serviced tissue samples for the Immunosenescence investigation. Results may inform treatments for accelerated aging processes observed in space as well as normal aging conditions on Earth.

NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren spent his day working on a pair of different experiments and configuring science hardware. He first started exploring techniques to manufacture optical fibers in space. Afterward, Lindgren began demonstrating ways to improve water recycling farther away from Earth. The two-time station visitor also disconnected components on a thermal spacesuit experiment and transferred samples stowed in Dragon to science freezers in Kibo and the U.S. Destiny laboratory module.

Astronauts Jessica Watkins of NASA and Samantha Cristoforetti of ESA (European Space Agency) studied how motion and distance perception is altered in microgravity. The duo worked in the Columbus laboratory module wearing virtual reality goggles and a neck brace while clicking on a trackball in response to visual and aural stimuli. Insights may lead to improved controls for space vehicles and more effective visual cues on Earth.

On-Orbit Status Report


Fiber Optic Production-2 (FOP-2): FOP 2.0 hardware was installed into the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG) Work Volume. FOP-2 builds on previous work to manufacture commercial optical fibers in microgravity using a blend of elements called ZBLAN. Earlier theoretical and experimental studies suggest that ZBLAN optical fibers produced in microgravity exhibit qualities superior to those of fibers produced on Earth. Results from FOP-2 could help further verify these studies and guide manufacture of high value optical fiber aboard the space station for commercial use.

Forward Osmosis Membrane (FOM): The Forward Osmosis Membrane experiment was activated, and the crew took photos of the assembled hardware and activated membranes. Water has some of the highest mass of any component needed for space travel, and effective recovery of potable water from wastewater is critical for life support and environmental health on long-term missions. Assessing the Performance of Urease-phospholipid Reactive Forward Osmosis Membranes for Water Reclamation Aboard the ISS (FOM) tests reactive membranes for water reclamation in microgravity as compared to 1g on Earth. These membranes show promise on the ground, but their performance must be evaluated in microgravity to advance the technology.

Immunosenescence: Media Change and Sample Collections were performed inside the Life Science Glovebox (LSG) for the installed samples (A & B) housed in the Immunosenescence BioCells. Microgravity causes changes in human immune cells that resemble aging, but happen faster than actual aging. Microgravity as a Model for Immunological Senescence and its Impact on Tissue Stem Cells and Regeneration (Immunosenescence) studies the effects of microgravity on cells involved in tissue regeneration and whether recovery occurs post-flight. Results could provide insight into whether effects of the biological aging process can be reversed.

Rodent Research-22 (RR-22): The Rodent Transporters and access units were cleaned and stowed. Effects of Spaceflight on Tissue Regeneration (RR-22) investigates the effects of spaceflight on systemic and local responses of skin healing using mice as a model organism. Researchers use multiple genetic and biological assessments to define the underlying biological changes and identify those that affect tissue regeneration, which could provide therapeutic targets for improved treatments.

Spacesuit Evaporation Rejection Flight Experiment (SERFE): The Contingency Water Container (CWC) bag was removed from SERFE and stowed. SERFE demonstrates a new technology to remove heat from spacesuits and maintain appropriate temperatures for crew members and equipment during space walks. The technology uses evaporation of water for cooling. The investigation determines whether microgravity affects performance and evaluates the technology’s effect on contamination and corrosion of spacesuit material.

VECTION: VECTION experiment sessions were performed. The objective of The Effect of Long Duration Hypogravity on the Perception of Self-Motion (VECTION) study is to determine to what extent an astronaut’s ability to visually interpret motion, orientation, and distance may be disrupted in a microgravity environment, how it may adapt, and how it may be changed upon return to Earth. Multiple experimental time points in flight and upon return to Earth allow for the adaptation and recovery process to be investigated.


Dragon Procedure Reviews and Preparation: On-Board Training (OBT) for a review of Dragon Emergency Response Materials was completed. The crew also deployed the Node 2 Forward Systems Operations Data File (SODF) with new Depress, Fire, Equipment Retrieval books and incorporated flown changeout pages into Ammonia Response and Medical Emergency Response books.

RS Extravehicular Activity (EVA) ESA Preparations: Crewmember Samantha Cristoforetti continued preparation activities for the upcoming RS EVA ESA, beginning with a review of the specific RS EVA ESA tasks execution sequence procedures, and followed by preparation of EVA tools. The Russian EVA is planned for Thursday, July 21.

In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Pre-Treat Tank Remove & Replace (R&R): The crew R&Red the Pre-Treat Tank as part of nominal WHC preventive maintenance. Each tank contains five liters of pre-treat solution, a mix of acid, chromium oxide, and water, used for toilet flushing and required for nominal WHC operation.

Completed Task List Activities:

  • None

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

  • STP-H7 File Transfer Commanding

Look Ahead Plan

Wednesday, July 20 (GMT 201)

  • Advanced NanoStep Cartridge Install (JAXA)
  • FLARE (SCEM) Sample Insert (JAXA)
  • FOM Cell Stow (NASA)
  • Microscope H/W Setup via SABL (NASA)
  • FOP-2 Sample Replace (NASA)
  • Immunosenescence Microscopy (NASA)


  • RS EVA ESA Prep
  • Cupola PCS Log File Transfer
  • Transfer Crew Dragon Cargo Operations

Thursday, July 21 (GMT 202)

  • FOP-2 Sample Replace (NASA)
  • GIS-9 ops (NASA)
  • ISS HAM Pass (NASA)
  • NanoRacks Module 48 Imagery (NASA)
  • Rodent Water Check (NASA)
  • XROOTS Nutrient Mix and Fluid Recovery and Check (NASA)


  • Transfer Crew Dragon Cargo Operations
  • IFM NOD3A5 Rack Rotation for Inspection

Friday, July 22 (GMT 203)

  • FOP-2 Sample Replace (NASA)
  • JAXA MCU T/S Closeout (JAXA)
  • CBEF Fan Sensor Replace and Checkout (JAXA)
  • Protein Manufacturing SABL Insert (NASA)
  • Astrobee Prep and Zero-Robotics Dry Run (NASA)


  • EHS – CSA-CP Extended Maintenance
  • Post-RS EVA ESA Ops
  • IFM WHC Urine Hydraulic Components R&R
  • Transfer Crew Dragon Cargo Operations

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

  • On-Board Training (OBT) Dragon Emergency Review
  • Dragon Node 2 Forward Systems Operations Data File (SODF) Deploy
  • Photo TV EVA Go Pro Battery Charging
  • Small PL Multi-purpose Cntlr Installation To DMS1 Rack
  • Vection Hardware Deployment
  • Fiber Optic Production 2.0 Procedure Review
  • Fiber Optic Production 2.0 Hardware Install
  • Vection Crew Handover
  • Vection Experiment Session
  • LSG Primary Crew Restraint Unfold/Fold
  • VECTION Hardware Teardown
  • Rodent Research Transporter Stow
  • Specific procedures study. Conf. with expert.
  • SERFE CWC-Iodine Remove
  • Vection Flash Drive Stow
  • Immunosenescence MELFI Sample Retrieve
  • Polar Sample Transfer to Cold Stowage
  • Cold Atom Lab Jumper Leak Check
  • Prepare tools for EVA
  • Forward Osmosis Membrane Cell Activation
  • Forward Osmosis Membrane Historical Photo
  • Immunosenescence Media Change and Sampling Ops
  • In Flight Maintenance (IFM) Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Pre-Treat Tank Remove & Replace
  • Immunosenescence MELFI Sample Insertion
  • Photo/TV EVA GOPRO US Transfer

SpaceRef staff editor.