Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 11 November 2011

By SpaceRef Editor
November 11, 2011
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 11 November 2011

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. US Holiday: Veterans Day.

Soyuz TMA-22/28S Launch Preparations: At the Baikonur/Kazakhstan Cosmodrome, L-2 preparations are underway for the launch of the Soyuz TMA-22 spacecraft on 11/13 (11:14pm EST). Early this morning, the assembled Soyuz FG launch vehicle was rolled out from the assembly-test facility to the launch site and erected.

After wakeup, FE-4 Volkov performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

CDR Fossum checked the running BCAT-6 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-6)-Phase Separation experiment for camera & flashlight battery charge. The Nikon D2Xs camera with EarthKAM software running with the Intervalometer on SSC-18 (Station Support Computer 18) is taking automated flash photography of Sample 3. [After starting on 11/10, the camera is running for a total of 7 days, taking one photo each hour. Camera battery change and Intervalometer restart is done three times a day. Objective of BCAT-6 Phase Separation: to gain unique insights into how gas and liquid phases separate and come together in microgravity. These fundamental studies on the underlying physics of fluids could provide the understanding needed to enable the development of less expensive, longer shelf-life household products, foods, and medicines.]

Spending three hours in the Soyuz 27S Descent Module (#702), Sergey Volkov, Mike Fossum & Satoshi Furukawa conducted the nominal descent drill, a standard training exercise for every crew returning on this spacecraft. Results of the exercise, which strictly forbids any command activation (except for switching the InPU display on the Neptun-ME console), were subsequently reported to ground control at TsUP/Moscow. Undocking from MRM1 Rassvet is currently planned for 11/21 at ~5:57pm EST (hatch closure: 2:50pm; landing ~9:25pm, about 88 km from Arkalyk/Kazakhstan). [The session includes a review of the pertinent ODFs (operational data files), specifically the books on Soyuz Ascent & Descent Procedures, Emergency Descents, and Off-Nominal Situations, crew responsibilities when executing the flight program, visual crew recognition of SUS (Entry Control System) failures, spacesuit procedures, etc., with special emphasis on operations with the Neptune-ME cockpit console. The training uses a Descent Simulator application (Trenasher Spusk =”descent trainer”) on the RSK1 laptop.]

After adjusting the US Lab camcorder for capturing cabin video, CDR Fossum set up the PPFS (Portable Pulmonary Function System), normally used for the VO2max assessment, and then performed the standard maintenance calibration of the system. [The activity is required every three years, using the same setup configuration as VO2max with some new additional calibration items delivered on Progress 45P with the PPFS Calibration Kit. After Mike powered on the system, the ground took over to upload new PPFS Calibration Experiment software, reboot the hardware and initiate the warm-up. The CDR then performed the volume calibration, after which the ground took control of PPFS and completed the remaining calibration activities, downlinked the data and closed the PPFS software remotely. Fossum disassembled the equipment and stowed it temporarily for use by Dan Burbank in 3-4 weeks.]

Furukawa completed a session with the psychological POMS (Profile of Mood States) experiment, completing his questionnaire for downlink to ground specialist.

Afterwards, Satoshi had another hour for prepacking and transferring US return cargo to the Soyuz TMA-02M/27S spacecraft.

Sergey continued preparations for the 11/21 Soyuz undocking from the MRM1, packing and loading return cargo with the help of an uplinked extensive of items list and stowage schematic for the Descent Module (SA).

FE-4 also completed the daily routine servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM. [Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers, replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers and filling EDV-SV, KOV (for Elektron), EDV-ZV & EDV on RP flow regulator.]

In support of ground ops, Satoshi connected two PCS (Portable Computer System) laptops in the Lab and Node-2 via Ethernet cables to the JSL (Joint Station LAN) network. The ground then ran remote tests to verify the new capability to remotely control the PCS laptops via Ku-band. Afterwards, FE-5 disconnected the cables again. They will be removed and stowed following 28S docking.

Working on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation, Furukawa removed its 4 used isolators and replaced them with a new set of 6-inch isolators. [As a quick fix to reduce isolator damage, FE-5 installed a rolled up pair of socks inside each of the new isolators to add extra cushion. There is already one sock installed in each isolator, so Satoshi used two more pairs to give each isolator now two socks each.]

The Japanese Flight Engineer also checked on oxygen level in the SM and COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), taking the periodic readings with the CSA-O2 (Compound Specific Analyzer-Oxygen) instrument.

The crewmembers again had an hour set aside each for personal crew departure preparations which are standard pre-return procedures for crewmembers.

At ~3:05am EST, the three crewmembers held the regular (nominally weekly) tagup with the Russian Flight Control Team (GOGU/Glavnaya operativnaya gruppa upravleniya), including Shift Flight Director (SRP), at TsUP-Moscow via S-band/audio, phone-patched from Houston and Moscow.

At ~3:20am, Sergey linked up with TsUP-Moscow stowage specialists via S-band to conduct the weekly IMS tagup, discussing inventory & stowage issues, equipment locations and cargo transfers.

At ~1:55pm, the crew was scheduled for their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-H.

Before Presleep, FE-5 will turn on the MPC (Multi Protocol Converter) and start the Ku-band data flow of video recorded during the day to the ground, with POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center) routing the onboard HRDL (High-Rate Data Link). After about an hour, Satoshi will turn MPC routing off again. [This is a routine operation which regularly transmits HD onboard video (live or tape playback) to the ground on a daily basis before sleeptime.]

Also before sleeptime, Sergey Volkov will set up and activate the Kenwood D700 “Sputnik” amateur radio station in the SM, starting the program for the Russian KPT-14 SHADOW-BEACON (Tenj-Mayak) experiment, to run overnight using VHF radio-transmitted time-tagged radio beacon packets from the RS (Russia Segment) in automatic mode. An amateur/ham mode change is scheduled tomorrow. [Objective of the experiment is the automatic retranslation of time tag (pre-planned executable) packets from ground stations. SHADOW (or ECLIPSE), sponsored by Roskosmos and its leading Moscow research organization TSNIIMASH (Central Research Institute of Machine Building), employs VHF amateur radio (ham) operators around the globe (via ARISS/Amateur Radio on ISS) to help in observing refraction/scattering effects in artificial plasmas using the method of RF (radio frequency) sounding in space experiments under different geophysical conditions],

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-4), and ARED advanced resistive exercise device (FE-4, FE-5). [CDR Fossum is currently following a special experimental “SPRINT” protocol which diverts from the regular 2.5hrs per day regime and introduces special daily sessions. No exercise will is timelined for Friday. If any day is not completed, Mike picks up where he left off, i.e., he would be finishing out the week with his last day of exercise on his off day.]

Tasks listed for Sergey Volkov on the Russian discretionary “time permitting” job for today were –

* Continuing the preparation & downlinking of more reportages (written text, photos, videos) for the Roskosmos website to promote Russia’s manned space program (max. file size 500 Mb),

* Taking care of the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance, updating/editing its standard “delta file” including stowage locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur), and

* Another ~30-min. session for Russia’s EKON Environmental Safety Agency, making observations and taking KPT-3 aerial photography of environmental conditions on Earth using the NIKON D3X camera with the RSK-1 laptop.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation): ISS daylight-awake orbit tracks remain in a seasonal pattern in which they temporarily parallel the terminator. Consequently most of the nadir views of the CEO target areas fall below the criteria for illumination, with darkness to the left of track and adequate lighting right of track. This condition is expected to persist at least through 11/14. Today none of CEO target areas had sufficient illumination. CEO staff continues to look for dynamic events targets for which oblique views to right of track will be useful. Auroral activity in the Southern Hemisphere was minimal and not expected to be a worthwhile target today. In lieu of traditional targets, the crew will be notified of nighttime opportunities of cities in oblique views. Targets uplinked for today were Sydney, Australia at Night (ISS had a fair weather approach from the NW for this target area. At this time, the crew was to look just right of track for the lights of Australia’s largest city of 4.6 million), Hobart, Tasmania at Night (ISS had a fair weather approach from the NW for this target area. At this time, looking left of track for the lights of Tasmania’s largest city of 215,000), Johannesburg, South Africa at Night (ISS had a clear weather approach from the NW for this target area. At this time, looking just left of track for the lights of South Africa’s largest city of over 4 million), and Durban, South Africa at Night (the crew had a fair weather approach from the NW for this target area; they were to look nadir for the lights of South Africa’s third largest city of over 3.5 million).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 9:02am EST [= epoch])

* Mean altitude – 387.7 km
* Apogee height – 402.4 km
* Perigee height – 372.9 km
* Period — 92.31 min.
* Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
* Eccentricity — 0.0021759
* Solar Beta Angle — -68.1 deg (magnitude increasing)
* Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.60
* Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 139 m
* Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 74,392
* Time in orbit (station) – 4739 days
* Time in orbit (crews, cum.) — 4026 days

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
————–Three-crew operations (Increment 29)————-
11/13/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/28S launch – D.Burbank (CDR-30)/A.Shkaplerov/A.Ivanishin (11:14pm EST)
11/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/28S docking (MRM2) (~12:45am)
————–Six-crew operations————-
11/21/11 — Soyuz TMA-02M/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29) (~5:57pm/9:25pm)
————–Three-crew operations————-
12/xx/11 — SpaceX Falcon 9/Dragon — (Under Review)
12/21/11 — Soyuz TMA-03M/29S launch – O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit — (Target Date)
12/23/11 — Soyuz TMA-03M/29S docking (MRM1) — (Target Date)
————–Six-crew operations—————-
TBD — Progress M-13M/45P undock
TBD — Progress M-14M/46P launch
TBD — Progress M-14M/46P docking (DC-1)
02/29/12 — ATV3 launch readiness
TBD — Soyuz TMA-22/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Volkov — (Target Date)
04/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S docking (MRM2) — (Target Date)
————–Six-crew operations—————-
05/05/12 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – launch on Proton (under review)
05/06/12 — Progress M-14M/46P undock
05/07/12 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) – docking (under review)
05/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-03M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-05M/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
05/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-05M/31S docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
09/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
————–Three-crew operations————-
10/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
10/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
11/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
03/xx/13 — Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch – P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
03/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
05/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch – M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S launch – M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-11M/37S launch – K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-11M/37S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
03/xx/14 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
————–Three-crew operations————-

SpaceRef staff editor.