Space Stations

NASA Space Station Status Report 30 August, 2022 – Using the Ultrasound 2 Device

By SpaceRef Editor
Status Report
August 31, 2022
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NASA Space Station Status Report 30 August, 2022 – Using the Ultrasound 2 Device
Astronauts Jessica Watkins and Bob Hines unload SpaceX Dragon cargo. (July 16, 2022)

Vein scans and human research samples comprised the majority of the research schedule for the Expedition 67 crew members on Tuesday. Spacesuit work is also ongoing aboard the International Space Station as the cosmonauts prepare for a spacewalk.

Three astronauts took turns on Tuesday morning using the Ultrasound 2 device to scan each other’s neck, shoulder, and leg veins. NASA Flight Engineers Kjell Lindgren, Bob Hines, and Jessica Watkins started the day inside the Columbus laboratory module with researchers on the ground remotely guiding the biomedical study. The ultrasound scans produce an echo that bounces off human tissue converting it to a video signal that is downlinked to Earth in real-time for analysis. Scientists view the imagery to observe how microgravity affects crew health.

The crew members also regularly collect their own blood, saliva, and urine samples, stowing the specimens in science freezers for later analysis. Shortly after Lindgren woke up on Tuesday, he spun his blood samples in a centrifuge for the Phospho-aging study to understand space-caused accelerated bone loss and muscle atrophy. ESA (European Space Agency) Flight Engineer Samantha Cristoforetti collected her blood and urine samples during the afternoon for future examination. Earlier, she documented her meals for a nutrition study then swapped material samples inside the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace, a high-temperature research facility.

Cristoforetti and Watkins also spent time inside the U.S. Quest airlock servicing a U.S. spacesuit. The duo split their day on a variety of suit activities including swapping components and cleaning cooling loops. Hines spent his afternoon charging computer tablets and downloading security updates for the devices.

Commander Oleg Artemyev and Flight Engineer Denis Matveev spent the day activating and inspecting a pair of Orlan spacesuits, testing their communication systems, and performing leak checks. The two cosmonauts have been busy this week preparing for an upcoming spacewalk to prepare the European robotic arm for payload operations on the station’s Russian segment. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov worked throughout Tuesday maintaining electronics systems and life support hardware inside the orbiting lab’s Russian modules.

On-Orbit Status Report


Advanced Nano Step: Following the completion of the experiment session, the Advanced Nano Step specimen cell was removed from its cartridge and Solution Crystallization Observation Facility (SCOF), and prepared for return to the ground on Crew-4. The Advanced Nano Step experiment monitors and records how the incorporation of specific impurity molecules affect the development and quality of protein crystals as they grow in a quartz cell aboard the ISS. The crystals grown on the ISS are returned to Earth and characterized using synchrotron X-ray diffraction. The protein crystal and impurity interactions are managed and monitored jointly by both scientists on the ground and the ISS crew.

Electro-static Levitation Furnace (ELF): The crew gained access to the experiment volume, gathered any loose samples, and then exchanged sample holder 2 in the sample cartridge. The ELF is an experimental facility designed to levitate/melt/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.

Nutrition Monitoring for the International Space Station (NutrISS): The crew performed an ESA Nutritional Assessment (ENA) in support of the NutrISS investigation. Long-duration spaceflight induces relevant changes in body composition and a loss of body mass. In the NutrISS investigation, a periodic assessment of body composition (body weight, fat mass, and fat-free mass) during spaceflight aboard the ISS is carried out using a dedicated bio-impedance analysis device to allow for the measurement of long-term energy balance modification over time. It is hypothesized that an adjusted diet maintaining a near-neutral energy balance, and/or increasing protein intake can limit microgravity-induced bone and muscle loss.

Phospho-aging Mechanism of Accelerated Aging Under Microgravity (Phospho-aging): The crew gathered urine samples and prepared for blood sampling in support of the 4th Phospho-aging session.  Phospho-aging examines the molecular mechanism behind aging-like symptoms, such as bone loss and muscle atrophy, that occur more rapidly in microgravity. Using analysis of human premature-aging syndromes (progeria) in mouse models, scientists identified CalciProtein Particles (CPPs) as a pro-aging factor in mammals. CPPs behave like a pathogen, inducing chronic inflammation and systemic tissue damage that could be the mechanism behind accelerated aging in space.


Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) Cooling Loop Maintenance Scrub: The crew performed EMU water loop scrubs and then acquired and tested water samples for conductivity on EMU 3004. EMU loop scrubs are required preventive maintenance needed to remove any chemical and biological contaminants from the EMU transport loop.

Node 1 Hatch Seal Cleaning: Today, the crew cleaned the excessive Braycote on the Node 1 hatch seal seen in a previous activity. The Braycote cleaning will prevent FOD which could cause hatch seal damage when the hatch is closed.

Completed Task List Activities:

  • None

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

  • PRO MSG Facility Activation Commanding
  • Node 3 Major Constituent Analyzer (MCA) Zero Calibration
  • EMU Data Recorder Operations

Look Ahead Plan

Wednesday, August 31 (GMT 243)

  • CSA Outreach Video
  • LSG Ops
  • NutrISS
  • Repository


  • Lab Dzus Fastener Repair
  • OGS Feedwater Hose Flush
  • Nitrogen Jumper Purge

Thursday, September 1 (GMT 244)

  • LSG Ops
  • NutrISS


  • None

Friday, September 2 (GMT 245)

  • LSG Ops
  • ManD tray replacement


  • Treadmill 2 System (T2) Monthly Inspection
  • Water Recovery System CWC-Iodine Fill
  • Rack Swap Pre-gather

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

  • Actiwatch Plus HRF Rack 2
  • Advanced Nano Step Cartridge and Nano Step Specimen Cell Removal
  • Crew Dragon Tablet Stow and Sync
  • CWC-Iodine Fill Teardown
  • ELF Item Gathering
  • ELF Sample Holder Change
  • EMU Cooling Loop Maintenance Scrub
  • Genes In Space 9 Photo Downlink
  • Ultrasound 2 Post Exam
  • Venous Thromboembolism
  • HRF Generic HRF Centrifuge Setup and Frozen Blood Collection
  • HRF Generic MELFI Sample Retrieval and Insertion
  • Iceberg Desiccant Swap
  • Node 1 Hatch Seal Clean Excessive Braycote
  • JEM Utility Outlet Panel (UOP) Cable Reconfiguration
  • LSG Work Volume Stow and Deploy
  • Microgravity Science Glovebox Activation
  • NutrISS – ESA Nutritional Assessment
  • Phospho-Aging MELFI Sample Retrieval and Insertion Operations
  • Polar Desiccant Swap
  • Public Affairs Office (PAO) Event in JEM
  • Ring Sheared Drop W212 Cable Exchange
  • Ultrasound 2 HRF Rack 2 Power On
  • Water Recovery System CWC-Iodine Fill Initialization

SpaceRef staff editor.