Space Stations

NASA Space Station Status Report 7 December, 2022 – Emergency Procedures Reviewed

By SpaceRef Editor
Status Report
December 8, 2022
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NASA Space Station Status Report 7 December, 2022 – Emergency Procedures Reviewed
Cosmonauts Anna Kikina works on electronics hardware. (Dec. 5, 2022)

The Expedition 68 crew took a break from its intense space research activities and focused on spacesuits, biomedical tests, and lab maintenance on Wednesday. Four International Space Station flight engineers also reviewed the procedures necessary to depart the orbiting lab in the unlikely event of an emergency.

Flight Engineers Josh Cassada and Nicole Mann spent some time during the afternoon studying instructions to replace life support components inside Extravehicular Mobility Units, or the spacesuits that astronauts wear during spacewalks. Cassada gathered tools at the beginning of the day to support the spacesuit maintenance work. Mann then took a few minutes shaking research bags containing particle-filled fluids for a study to understand the formation of asteroids and planets and possibly inform advanced manufacturing techniques on Earth.

Cassada also had time after lunch to join Flight Engineer Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) for vein scans using the Ultrasound 2 device. Cassada performed the medical duties scanning Wakata’s leg, neck, and shoulder veins with remote guidance from a flight surgeon on the ground. Earlier, Wakata took a robotics test for a behavioral study that measures crew performance. At the end of the day, he photographed sutured biological samples to investigate wound healing in space.

NASA astronaut Frank Rubio spent the day working in the Combustion Integrated Rack relieving pressure, replacing components, and checking cable connections inside the device that enables safe research into flames, fuel, and soot in microgravity.

Mann, Cassada, Wakata, and Roscosmos Flight Engineer Anna Kikina, who rode aboard the SpaceX Dragon Endurance crew ship to the station on Oct. 6, gathered together for an emergency procedures review on Wednesday afternoon. The quartet studied together on a computer the steps necessary to board Endurance and quickly evacuate the station during an unlikely emergency event such as a depressurization or a fire.

Cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin spent all day Wednesday continuing work on Orlan spacesuit maintenance. The duo serviced and replaced life support components inside the suits they will wear on an upcoming spacewalk to relocate a radiator from the Rassvet module to the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module. Kikina started her day working on electronics and computer hardware before wrapping up her shift studying how to pilot robots or spacecraft on future planetary missions.

On-Orbit Status Report


Behavioral Core Measures (BCM): A BCM research session consisting of a set of 12 runs/tests was performed. The Standardized Behavioral Measures for Detecting Behavioral Health Risks during Exploration Missions (BCM) experiment initially examined a suite of measurements to reliably assess the risk of adverse cognitive or behavioral conditions and psychiatric disorders during long-duration spaceflight, and evaluated the feasibility of those tests within the operational time constraints of spaceflight for two crewmembers. Subsequent subjects perform a subset of the original activities to measure the performance capabilities of deconditioned crew members to complete either individual or crew telerobotic operations within the first 24 hours after landing. This information could help characterize what tasks a crewmember who has spent months in weightlessness can reasonably be expected to perform after landing on the surface of Mars.

Biological Research In Canisters-26 (BRIC-26): As a continuation of the experiment, several of the BRIC-26 experiment canisters were removed from the facility and inserted into -80° C cold stowage. Previous research shows that exposure to microgravity affects microbial characteristics such as virulence and environmental resistance, but the molecular mechanisms underlying these changes are unclear. BRIC-26 measures the effect of exposure to microgravity on three fundamental genetic processes and their interactions in the bacteria Bacillus subtilis. Results could provide insight into how the interaction of DNA and environment affects gene expression and, ultimately, the observable characteristics in an organism.

Combustion Integrated Rack/Solid Fuel Ignition and Extinction (CIR/SoFIE): The crew gained access to the CIR facility and exchanged several leaky solenoid valves. This is one of the component replacements needed to get the CIR/SoFIE system ready to support science operations. The CIR facility includes an optics bench, combustion chamber, fuel and oxidizer control, and five different cameras for performing combustion investigations in microgravity. SoFIE is a hardware insert for the CIR that enables a wide range of solid-material combustion and fire suppression studies.

NanoRacks Module-83: NanoRacks Module-83 was installed into NanoRacks Mainframe Alpha.  Module-83 is a simple Plug-n-Play tech demo to test the usability of SpaceChains multi-signature security system as well as reliability of GOMSpace boards within the ISS environment. SpaceChain 2.0 validates the hardware and software needed for blockchain transactions between hardware on the ground and the space station. Relaying transactions to the space station protects them from physical attack, while multi-signature technology and secure satellite transmission provide more security from cyberattacks. The investigation also actively explores what types of space payloads could use blockchain.

Particle Vibration: The crew located and shook the cell array bags to prevent the experiment particles from sticking to the container walls. The thermo-vibrational-driven Particle self-Assembly and Ordering mechanisms in Low grAvity (PAOLA) project aims to investigate the self-organization mechanisms of particles in fluids. The outcomes of the project have various implications in the science of materials (development of novel manufacturing techniques) and astrophysics (understanding of the mechanisms responsible for the formation of asteroids and planets).

Suture in Space (SiS): The crew removed the second and final set of the SiS Experiment Containers (ECs) from the Biolab facility and installed reference ECs in their place. Although some studies have demonstrated that first aid and surgical procedures are feasible in space, suture behavior and wound healing mechanisms in weightlessness are poorly known. Wound Healing and Sutures in Unloading Conditions (SiS) investigates the behavior of sutured wounds and the mechanisms of tissue repair/regeneration in microgravity. Studying the complex models, and the hardware developed to perform this experiment on the ISS, allows for researchers to measure mechanical forces at the wound site, monitor the wound closure, and study the mechanisms involved in tissue repair.


US Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) 3009 Fan Pump Separator (FPS) Remove and Replace (R&R) Activities: Today, the crew gathered EVA and In-Flight Maintenance (IFM) tools for configuration/staging of tools and hardware in preparation for the R&R. The crew then studied a package of references and procedures on how to successfully perform the R&R. Finally, the crew and ground teams held a procedure review conference to finalize operations for the R&R that is scheduled tomorrow. The FPS is a component of the Primary Life Support Subsystem (PLSS) that provides circulation of the ventilation and cooling fluids for the EMU.

SpaceX Crew Dragon Onboard Trainings (OBTs): The crew completed reviews of the SpX Crew Dragon emergency departure, SpX Crew Dragon free-flight depress response, and SpX Crew Dragon free-flight fire response training materials. This is important and done as a refresher for the crew in the event of a SpX Crew Dragon emergency scenario.

Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS) Portable Emergency Provisions (PEPS) Inspection: The crew verified that the Portable Fire Extinguisher (PFE), Extension Hose Tee Kit, the Portable Breathing Apparatus (PBA) [a PBA consists of a Quick Don Mask (QDM) Assembly connected to a PBA Oxygen Reducer/Cylinder Assembly], and Pre-Breathe Mask are all free of damage. These inspections are crucial to ensure functionality in the event of an emergency scenario.

Ultrasound Scan: Today, the Crew Medical Officer (CMO) operated the ultrasound device to perform a Venous Thromboembolism (VTE) scan of the neck, clavicle, shoulder, and behind the knee. This routine medical exam utilizes existing on-orbit eye exam ultrasound hardware for bilateral imaging of the internal jugular, entire subclavian-axillary axis and lower extremity deep veins. 

Completed Task List Activities:

  • None

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

  • HRF2 Signal Analogue Downlink
  • EVA FPS R&R Procedure Review Conference
  • CIR Solenoid Valve Replace
  • HRF2 Rack Commanding

Look Ahead Plan

Thursday, December 8 (GMT 342)

  • CIR Hardware Return
  • Food Physiology Diet Briefing
  • FSL SMD SCU Exchange
  • HRF Blood and Urine Collect
  • ISS HAM Pass
  • JWRS Component Installation
  • MSG Activation
  • NanoRacks Deployer Disassembly
  • Plant Habitat H/W Gather
  • Sphere Camera-1 Gather and Assembly


  • EVA EMU Radio and FPS R&R
  • Transfer Cargo Dragon Cargo Operations

Friday, December 9 (GMT 343)

  • ELF Sample Cartridge Exchange
  • HRF Urine and Blood Collect
  • JAXA Media Take 4
  • J-SSOD-23 Hardware Removal From Slide Table
  • PFMI-ASCENT Sample Change
  • Plant Habitat QD Replacement
  • Veg-05 Experiment Install
  • Zero-T2


  • EVA FPS Tool Stow
  • SpX Crew Dragon Deorbit Entry/Landing Contingencies Review

Saturday, December 10 (GMT 344)

  • HRF Urine Collection
  • ISS HAM Pass
  • Neural Integration System fixations
  • STaARS BS-15 Group 1 Insert into MELFI


  • Crew Off Duty

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

  • NanoRacks Mainframe Alpha Module Install
  • JEM Water Recovery System (JWRS) Pump Exchange Item Gathering
  • Behavioral Core Measures ROBoT-r Research Testing
  • Inventory of FGB Plane I Stowage Areas
  • ECLSS PEPS Inspection
  • US EVA EMU 3009 FPS R&R Tool Gather
  • Environmental Health System (EHS) – Formaldehyde Monitoring Kit (FMK) Deployment Operations
  • EHS Grab Sample Container (GSC) Sampling Operations
  • JSB Deployment in Columbus
  • Ultrasound 2 HRF Rack 2 Power On
  • Health Maintenance System (HMS) VTE Prep
  • HMS VTE Scan
  • Particle Vibration Manual Mixing
  • CIR Solenoid Valve Replace
  • HMS Ultrasound 2 Post Exam
  • HRF Generic Urine Collection Setup
  • SpX Crew Dragon Emergency Departure Procedure Review
  • Study for FPS R&R
  • BRIC Retrieval
  • BRIC-26 MELFI Sample Insertion
  • SpX Crew Dragon Free-Flight Depress/Fire Response Refresher
  • EVA Battery (BATT) Removal
  • HRF Generic Frozen Blood Collection Hardware Setup
  • EC Deinstallation from Biolab Incubator
  • CIR Rack Doors Close/Open
  • EVA FPS R&R Procedure Review Conference
  • SiS Photo Session
  • EVA Glove Photos
  • EC Packing
  • SiS EC Cold Stowage
  • Biolab Reference EC Installation

SpaceRef staff editor.