Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 12 April 2012

By SpaceRef Editor
April 12, 2012
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 12 April 2012
NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 12 April 2012

ISS On-Orbit Status 04/12/12

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.

>>>Today Russia observes Denj Kosmonavtov (Cosmonauts Day) and the world Yuri’s Night — celebrating Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin’s pioneering flight into space 51 years ago. And NASA is observing, on Commemorative Space Day, the 31st anniversary of STS-1, the first Space Shuttle mission to orbit.
[Yuri was accepted into the cosmonaut unit in 1960, at age 26. After his historic 108-min. flight around the Earth in “Vostok 1” on April 12, 1961, which ended with a parachute ejection at 7 km altitude over a farm field near the city of Engels in Saratov Oblast (province), he was promoted to unit leader. Seven years later, on March 27, 1968, Yuri died with a flight instructor in a MiG-15 fighter jet crash. Chief Designer of the thusly inaugurated Soviet human space program was Sergey Pavlovich Korolev. Exactly 20 years after Yuri’s flight, John Young & Bob Crippen took the Columbia into space for a daring test mission lasting 2 days 6 hours 20 minutes 52 seconds. No other space rocket has ever carried humans on its very first test flight.]

After breakfast, FE-1 Shkaplerov performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

FE-5 Kuipers tended to the JAXA SSHDT (Super Sensitive High Definition TV), transferred from the JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) to the Node-3/Cupola for taking video of North Pole auroras and night views of Japan for 5 days (i.e., 4/9 – 4/13). [About 4 hrs later, André exchanged the 32GB memory card and the lens, then restarted the recording (once a day). For the first 3 days, the SSHDTV used a single 4.8mm focus lens with IR Cut Filter 3 and for the remaining 2 days a single focus 8mm lens.]

CDR Burbank collected the periodic water sample from the WPA WWT (Water Processor Assembly / Waste Water Tank).

Later, Dan performed R&R (Removal & Replacement) of the WPA Ion Bed ORU (On-orbit Replaceable Unit) in WR S-1 (Water Recovery System 1) rack with a spare from stowage. [The WPA is exhibiting an increasing TOC (Organic Carbon) trend that is now above the TOCA minimum detection level of 475 ppb. The source of the increased TOC is not fully understood, but it is possible that a steady contribution of Dimethylsilanediol (DMSD) and methylsulfone are coming off of the MF (Multi Filtration) beds and into the Ion Exchange Bed ORU and contributing to the increasing TOC trend. The removed Ion Exchange Bed will be returned to the ground.]

With the RS (Russian Segment) STTS audio comm systems temporarily configured for crew research in MRM2 (Mini Research Module 2), Anton Shkaplerov conducted another active session for the Russian experiment KPT-10 “Kulonovskiy Kristall” (Coulomb Crystal), followed by downlinking the video footage obtained with a SONY HVR-Z1J camcorder over two RGS (Russian Groundsite) passes (11:47am & 1:22pm) and reconfiguring STTS to nominal. [KPT-10 studies dynamic and structural characteristics of the Coulomb systems formed by charged dispersed diamagnetic macroparticles in the magnetic trap, investigating the following processes onboard the ISS RS: condensed dust media, Coulomb crystals, and formation of Coulomb liquids due to charged macroparticles. Coulomb systems are structures following Coulomb’s Law, a law of physics describing the electrostatic interaction between electrically charged particles. It was essential to the development of the theory of electromagnetism.]

FE-4 Kononenko again had several hours allotted to continue loading trash and discarded equipment on Progress 46P for disposal, while concurrently updating the IMS database. [Progress M-14M/46P will undock on 4/19, spent 9 days in orbit supporting radar experiments and deorbit on 4/28.]

Afterwards, Oleg conducted the regular transfer of US condensate water from CWC (Collapsible Water Container) to the RS for the periodic (about twice a month) replenishing of the Elektron’s water supply for electrolysis, filling the designated KOV EDV container. Once filled, the EDV was connected to the BPK transfer pump for processing through the BKO water purification (multifiltration) unit. [The 40-minute procedure is specially designed for gas/liquid separation, i.e., to prevent air bubbles larger than ~10 mm from getting into the Elektron’s BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown.]

CDR Burbank retrieved an uplinked ISSAC (ISS Agricultural Camera) file and transferred it, on a USB stick, to the ISSAC laptop at the WORF (Window Observational Research Facility) in the Lab, updating the software. [ISSAC’s function is to take frequent visible-light & infrared images of vegetated areas on the Earth. The camera focuses principally on rangelands, grasslands, forests, and wetlands in the northern Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions of the United States. The images may be delivered directly upon request to farmers, ranchers, foresters, natural resource managers and tribal officials to help improve their environmental stewardship of the land. The images will also be shared with educators for classroom use.]

Burbank also undertook the regular monthly session of the CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) emergency medical operations OBT (On-Board Training) drill, a 30-min. exercise to refresh his CMO (Crew Medical Officer) acuity in a number of critical health areas. The video-based proficiency drill today focused on a review of all topics. At the end, Dan completed a self-assessment questionnaire. Answers were provided at test conclusion. [The HMS (Health Maintenance Systems) hardware, including ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) equipment, may be used in contingency situations where crew life is at risk. To maintain proficiency, crewmembers spend one hour per month reviewing HMS and ACLS equipment and procedures via the HMS and ACLS CBT (computer-based training). The training drill, each crewmember for him/herself, refreshes their memory of the on-orbit stowage and deployment locations, equipment etc. and procedures.]

Kuipers broke out and set up the HMS USND-2 (Health Maintenance Systems Ultrasound 2) equipment, then performed an eye scan on the CDR as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Later, Don Pettit & André Kuipers took turns as subjects, with Burbank acting as CMO for FE-5, and the latter for FE-6. [Objective of the Ultrasound scans, the 2nd for the crewmembers, was an eye examination for the three subjects, using the 12L-RS Ultrasound Scanning Probe and the G1s camcorder (VCA2/Video Camera Assembly 2) to document the measurements..]

André also conducted the weekly 10-min. CWC (Collapsible Water Container) inventory as part of the on-going WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated “cue cards” based on the crew’s water calldowns are sent up every other week for recording changes. [The current card (29-0008R) lists 19 CWCs (279.0 L total) for the five types of water identified on board: 1. Silver technical water (3 CWCs with 103.9 L, for Elektron electrolysis, plus 1 empty bag, all containing Wautersia bacteria; 2. Condensate water (3 CWCs with 14.0 L, plus 2 empty bags); 3. Iodinated water (7 CWCs with 121.8 L; 4. Waste water (1 bag with 10.6 L EMU waste water); and 5. Special fluid (1 CWC with 20.2 L, hose/pump flush). Also one leaky CWC (#1024) with 8.5L). Other CWCs are stowed behind racks and are currently not being tracked due to unchanging contents. Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

In the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment), after powering off the Hydraulic Interface Control, ASU Fan Control & ASU Control panels for safety and removing the KTO solid waste container temporarily, CDR Burbank took out the pump separator and replaced it with a spare unit. [The Pump Separators are “run to failure” items. But it has been experiencing an increase in “Check Sep” indicator lights, becoming a nuisance to the crew. Pump Separators have an expected life of 180 days; this pump has been in use for 237 days. After Dan’s R&R, pretreat urine backflowed from the UPA WSTA (Waste Storage Tank Assembly), flooding the new Pump (no fluid leaked into the cabin). The leading theory is that one of the valves on the new pump separator was launched in the open position instead of closed as ot should have been. The WHC is now configured to use an internal EDV. The pump was successfully operated three times to clear the fluid. WHC is GO for use on internal EDV. The forward plan for configuring back to UPA is in work.]

Supporting POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center)/Huntsville on the CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack), Dan Burbank uninstalled & removed the three protective alignment guides from the rack, re-engaged the snubber pins and locked the safety pins to allow the PaRIS (Passive Rack Isolation System) to be active before begin of ground-commanded CIR operations requiring a microgravity environment.

André Kuipers & Don Pettit joined up for another laptop-based OBT Onboard Proficiency training on the SpaceX Dragon mission profile, the Dragon rendezvous crew procedures and the crew interfaces for monitoring & commanding the Dragon. [The emphasis for this lesson was on providing context on how the two-person crew will allocate the Visiting Vehicle Officer’s responsibilities between them. On the road to the Dragon Demo mission, there are several OBT (Onboard Training) events scheduled to prepare the crew for rendezvous, capture, install, demate, and release.]

Anton Shkaplerov had ~1h 40m set aside for continuing pre-packing of cargo to be stowed on Soyuz 28S which will carry return cargo in the descent module (SA) and trash & excessed equipment in the habitation module (BO) for disposal.

Anatoly Ivanishin spent several hours (~4.5h) on the periodic surface sampling, today taking samples in the FGB at 12 different equipment & structure locations for microbiological tests. [Equipment could be moved for the sampling, and any spots of mold or dirt on the goods, equipment and structural elements were to be photographed.]

Oleg Kononenko took 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).

FE-4 also completed the routine daily 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.]

FE-5 Kuipers conducted his weekly task of filling out his SHD (Space Headache) questionnaire which he started after Soyuz launch and continues on ISS (on an SSC/Station Support Computer) for every week after his first week in space.

Next, André relocated a CTB (Crew Transport Bag) from ATV-3 to JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) for upcoming (4/6) Space Sound activities.

Later, FE-5 worked in the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) on the HRF-2 PFM/PAM (Human Research Facility 2 Pulmonary Function Module/Photoacoustic Analyzer Module), modifying a DPFM (Differential Pressure Flowmeter) to function as a Bag Filling Assembly. [For the IFM (Inflight Maintenance, André had to remove the DPFM’s screen and tape it to create an air-tight seal to allow for bag filling and emptying (vacuum). Background: The connector on the PFM/PAM Bag Filling Assembly broke during the recent CARD session with André, hence the session had to be stopped. PFS (Pulmonary Function System) has three PFM/PAM DPFMs, one of which could be modified into a temporary Bag Filling Assembly, and used until a new PFM/PAM Bag Filling Assembly can be launched.]

Don Pettit continued the current task of preventive inspection & cleaning of accessible AR (Atmosphere Revitalization) system HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) bacteria filters in Node-1, Node-2 and Node-3 started earlier by Kuipers (3/8), and Burbank (3/23, 3/28, 4/5).

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

The CDR & FE-6 had another time slot reserved each for making entries in their electronic Journals on the personal SSC. [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]

At ~5:50am EDT, the entire crew joined up to support a Russian PAO TV event, downlinking messages of greetings & congratulations to recipients for Cosmonautics Day today.

At ~7:35 am, the six crewmembers supported a second Russian PAO TV downlink, again for ground events on the occasion of Cosmonautics Day.

At ~4:25pm, Anton, Anatoly & Oleg are scheduled for an amateur/ham radio session with participants in the Participants of Young Engineers Forum in St. Petersburg

Before Presleep, Pettit 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, Don turns 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.]

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-5, FE-6), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2, FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR, FE-1) and VELO ergometer bike with load trainer (FE-4), [FE-6 is on the special experimental SPRINT protocol which diverts from the regular 2.5 hrs per day exercise regime and introduces special daily sessions, followed by a USND (Ultrasound) leg muscle self scan in COL. Today’s exercise called for CEVIS. If any day is not completed, Don 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.]

After his T2 session, Dan Burbank closed down the T2 software on its laptop for data transfer, then turned off the T2 display.

Tasks listed for Shkaplerov, Kononenko & Ivanishin on the Russian discretionary “time permitting” job for today were –
· A ~30-min. run of the GFI-8 “Uragan” (hurricane) earth-imaging program with the NIKON D3X digital camera with Sigma AF 300-800mm telelens, focusing on volcanoes Paran, Cordon-Kaul, Hudson, Santa Maria, Kilimanjaro, Sangai, Tanguraya, Reventador & Galeras, and the Patagonia glaciers Upsala, Viedma and Chico. A ~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,
· A ~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, and
· More preparation & downlinking of reportages (written text, photos, videos) for the Roskosmos website to promote Russia’s manned space program (max. file size 500 Mb).
CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today were Phoenix at Night (CITIES AT NIGHT COLLECTION: ISS had a nadir pass in fair weather with its approach from the NW for this target area. The major U.S. city Phoenix with a population of about 1.5 million sprawls within south-central Arizona’s Valley of the Sun over an area of 517 square miles. Trying for views that capture the city’s lights within a single frame), Antananarivo, Madagascar (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION: This capital city of about 1.5 million is located in this large, island nation’s central highland. ISS had a mid-afternoon pass with target at nadir. Much of the interior of Madagascar is exposed and heavily eroded with little vegetation. The Antananarivo area has more woodlands and small lakes. As ISS tracked the elevated interior of the island, partly cloudy conditions were expected, but the crew was to try for a single frame view of the entire city), Ascension Island, Atlantic Ocean (HMS BEAGLE SITE: At this time the crew was to aim towards nadir for this small, remote island in the Equatorial Atlantic. The late afternoon approach was from the SW with fair weather expected. The island was visited by Charles Darwin in 1836, and today it is the location of Wideawake Airfield, an ESA tracking station, and a BBC World Service relay station. Trying for detailed views of the target within a single frame), Seoul, South Korea at Night (CITIES AT NIGHT COLLECTION: ISS had a fair weather nighttime pass offering a nadir view of this target area. Seoul is a densely populated city with 10.5 million people of only 234 square miles. As ISS approached from the NW, the crew was to look for this bright urban area and acquire views within a single frame), and Chiloe Island, southern Chile (HMS BEAGLE SITE: ISS had an early afternoon pass with partly cloudy weather expected. At this time, the crew was to look near nadir for this large, rugged and forested island as you approach the southern coast of Chile from the SW, trying for context views of the island as a whole. Darwin and the Beagle arrived at this island on June 12, 1834, surveyed the west coast, gathered provisions and left the next day. Trying for either a single-frame view or a mapping strip of this target).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:56am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 392.8 km
Apogee height – 397.9 km
Perigee height – 387.6 km
Period — 92.41 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0007676
Solar Beta Angle — 58.2 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.58
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 67 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 76,778
Time in orbit (station) — 4892 days
Time in orbit (crews, cum.) — 4179 days

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
————–Six-crew operations—————-
04/19/12 — Progress M-14M/46P undock (7:03am EDT)
46P Orbital Operations
04/20/12 — Progress M-15M/47P launch (8:50:26am EDT)
04/22/12 — Progress M-15M/47P docking (~10:40am)
04/27/12 — Soyuz TMA-22/28S undock (4:19am EDT)
04/27/12 — Soyuz TMA-22/28S landing (7:45am EDT; 2:45pm DMT/Moscow) (End of Increment 30)
04/28/12 — Progress M-14M/46P deorbit burn (6:33am EDT)
————–Three-crew operations————-
04/30/12 — SpaceX Dragon launch (12:22pm EDT; target date)
05/15/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/S.Revin
05/17/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S docking (MRM2)
————–Six-crew operations—————-
07/01/12 — Soyuz TMA-03M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
————–Three-crew operations————-
07/15/12 — Soyuz TMA-05M/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
07/17/12 — Soyuz TMA-05M/31S docking
07/20/12 — HTV3 launch (~10:18pm EDT)
07/31/12 — Progress M16M/48P launch
08/02/12 — Progress M16M/48P docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
09/17/12 — Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
————–Three-crew operations————-
10/15/12 — Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
10/17/12 — Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
11/01/12 — Progress M-17M/49P launch
11/03/12 — Progress M-17M/49P docking
11/12/12 — Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
————–Three-crew operations————-
12/05/12 — Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 — Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
12/26/12 — Progress M-18M/50P launch
12/28/12 — Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/19/13 — Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
————–Three-crew operations————-
04/02/13 — Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch – P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
04/04/13 — Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
05/16/13 — Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/29/13 — Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch – M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/31/13 — 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.