Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 12 October 2008

By SpaceRef Editor
October 12, 2008
Filed under , , ,
NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 12 October 2008

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Sunday – off-duty day for CDR Volkov, FE-1 Kononenko & FE-2 Chamitoff. Ahead: Week 26 of Increment 17.

Soyuz TMA-13 (17S) launched flawlessly this morning on time at 3:01:38am EDT carrying ISS-18 CDR Michael Fincke (first American to launch twice on a Soyuz), Soyuz CDR/ISS-18 FE-1 Yuri Lonchakov, and SFP/VC15 Richard Garriott. Separations from second & third stage were nominal. Orbit was attained at L+ 8:45 min at an altitude of 230.3 km (perigee ~200.7 km/apogee ~259.9 km, downrange ~520 km, velocity ~7.50 km/s, orbit period 88.8 min). Antennas and solar arrays deployed nominally at orbit insertion. 17S has a planned two-day rendezvous profile, to aim for docking on Tuesday, 10/14, at (12:33pm Moscow time). See Flight Plan, below. [At orbit insertion, Soyuz unfolded two solar arrays, four Kurs antennas, one TORU/Rassvet-M antenna and one telemetry antenna. Later, the crew activated antenna heaters, set the maneuver mode, turned on the RKO orbit radio tracking system, started leak checks, etc. Two orbit adjustment burns of ~5 min duration each were executed this morning, DV1 (~17.91 m/s) at 6:42am, DV2 (9.40 m/s) at 7:22am, both with the SKD main engine. After the two-day "chase", supported by several more midcourse burns, 17S will dock at the FGB nadir port on 10/14 at ~4:38am EDT (12:33pm Moscow time).]

FE-2 Chamitoff had the third day of his second SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity) session, which runs in two blocks of six days each. Today, Greg again began with measurements and sampling of body mass (with SLAMMD/Space Linear Acceleration Mass Measurement Device), blood (with PCBA/Portable Clinical Blood Analyzer), and urine, to continue for three more days. Samples were stowed in the MELFI (Minus-Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS). [Background: For the SOLO experiment, Chamitoff follows a special high-salt diet, for which prepared meals are provided onboard. All three daily meals are being logged on sheets stowed in the PCBA Consumable Kit in the MELFI along with control solution and cartridges for the PCBA. Blood and urine samples are stowed in the freezer. SOLO, an ESA/German experiment from the DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine in Cologne/Germany, investigates the mechanisms of fluid and salt retention in the body during long-duration space flight. Background: The hypothesis of an increased urine flow as the main cause for body mass decrease has been questioned in several recently flown missions. Data from the US SLS1/2 missions as well as the European/Russian Euromir `94 & MIR 97 missions show that urine flow and total body fluid remain unchanged when isocaloric energy intake is achieved. However, in two astronauts during these missions the renin-angiotensin system was considerably activated while plasma ANP concentrations were decreased. Calculation of daily sodium balances during a 15-day experiment of the MIR 97 mission (by subtracting sodium excretion from sodium intake) showed an astonishing result: the astronaut retained on average 50 mmol sodium daily in space compared to balanced sodium in the control experiment. SLAMMD, performed first on Expedition 12 in December 2005, provides an accurate means of determining the on-orbit mass of humans spanning the range from the 5th percentile Japanese female and the 95th percentile American male. The procedure, in accordance with Newton’s 2nd Law of Motion, finds the mass by dividing force, generated by two springs inside the SLAMMD drawer, by acceleration measured with a precise optical instrument that detects the position versus time trajectory of the SLAMMD guide arm and a micro controller which collects the raw data and provides the precise timing. The final computation is done via portable laptop computer with SLAMMD unique software. To calculate their mass, crewmembers wrap their legs around a leg support assembly, align the stomach against a belly pad and either rest the head or chin on a head rest. For calibration, an 18-lbs. mass is used at different lengths from the pivot point, to simulate different mass values. Crew mass range is from 90 to 240 lbs.]

In the JAXA Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), Gregory supported tonight’s continuing Marangoni Surface experimentation in the FPEF (Fluid Physics Experiment Facility), ground-commanded from the SSIPC (Space Station Integration & Promotion Center) at Tsukuba/Japan, by activating the MMA (Microgravity Measurement Apparatus) and its laptop (MLT), first powering up the MMA’s NCU/RSU (Network Control Unit/Remote Sensor Unit) set from the Ryutai rack’s UDC (Utility DC-to-DC Converter), then turning on both NCU/RSU and MLT. [Tsukuba is conducting the Marangoni experiment basically only during crew sleep (for quiescence), starting again tonight until 10/16 (except for 10/9). Running time tonight will be from 5:30pm EDT to 2:00am. Crewmembers can enter Kibo during the experiment but are advised not to cause any major disturbance of the micro-G environment.]

Also in the JAXA Kibo module, the FE-2 removed & replaced a number of recording disks (#1030, #1031, #1032, #1033, #1034) of the IPU VRU (Image Processing Unit/Video Recording Unit).

Sergey Volkov performed the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM (Service Module), including the weekly collection of the toilet flush (SP) counter and water supply (SVO) readings for calldown to TsUP-Moscow. [Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.]

SOZh checkups by the CDR today also include the Russian POTOK-150MK (150 micron) air filter unit of the SM’s SOGS air revitalization subsystem, gathering weekly data on total operating time & “On” durations for reporting to TsUP-Moscow.

Chamitoff had the usual three hours reserved for his part of the regular weekly station cleaning in the USOS (US Segment), including COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) and Kibo, that was not scheduled yesterday alongside the RS (Russian Segment) “uborka” housecleaning by his two crewmates.

At ~10:15am, Greg had his weekly PFC (Private Family Conference) via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop).

The crew completed their regular 2.5-hr. physical workout program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the TVIS treadmill (CDR/2.5h, FE-1/2.5h, FE-2), and RED resistive exercise device (FE-2).

Working off the discretionary “time permitting” task list, CDR Volkov ran another session for Russia’s Environmental Safety Agency (EKON), making observations and taking KPT-3 aerial photography with the NIKON D2X camera of environmental conditions in Russia. [Today’s target were London and Brussels.]

A second item on the discretionary task list for FE-1 Kononenko was another run of the Russian DZZ-2 "Diatomeya" ocean observations program, the last one for Expedition 17, using the NIKON-F5 DCS still camera and the HDV (high-definition) video camcorder from SM window 8 for ~20 min to record high production water areas. [Target zones today in the Atlantic Ocean were the coastal area of Brazil to the Strait of Gibraltar, and from the Gulf of Mexico to the English Channel, in the Pacific Ocean the Line Archipelago to the US coast.]

Also off the Russian suggestions list, Kononenko performed a session of the Russian GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program, using the D2X to take telephotos. [Uplinked target zones were the Ugra National Park, forest vegetation in the steppe, the northernmost island of the Galapagos archipelago, and Darwin Island.]

As generally every day now, today starting at 9:00am and running until 3:00pm, the US CDRA (Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly) is running intermittently for two half-cycles to control ppCO2 levels. This configuration for the daily ops does not require connecting & disconnecting the ITCS cooling loop. [A forward plan is in work for cycling the CSV (CO2 Selector Valve) to prevent its sticking. CDRA remains “yellow” on the ISS critical systems list.]

An activity to upgrade SSC (Station Support Computer) laptops to Wireless capability (by installing wireless cards and modifying software) remains on Chamitoff’s discretionary “job jar” task list.

17S Flight Plan Overview:

  • Flight Day 1:
    • Launch to Orbit, ~9 min in duration; auto deployment of solar arrays & antennas; pressurization of prop tanks and filling of Soyuz manifolds; docking probe extended; leak check by crew of BO & SA modules; KURS self tests; test of BDUS angular rate sensors; attitude established (OSK/LVLH); crew opens BO-SA hatch, ingresses BO and doffs Sokol suits; test of RUO rotational hand controller; Soyuz put in ISK (sun spuinning/”barbecue”) mode; data for DV1 & DV2 burns uplinked; SOA air purification system activated in BO and deactivated in SA; DV1 burn; DV2 burn; Soyuz back in ISK attitude; crew clean & dry Sokols; crew sleep.
  • Flight Day 2
    • Post-sleep activities; BO workstation prepared; data for DV3 burn uplinked; crew tests RUO-2 & RUD-2 rotational and translational hand controllers; DV3 attitude established by crew; DV3 burn executed; Soyuz back in ISK attitude; crew swaps CO2 filters in BO; crew sleep.
  • Flight Day 3
    • Post-sleep activities; KURS-A heaters activated; data for automated rendezvous uplinked; crew dons Sokols; SOA deactivated in BO and activated in SA; crew ingresses SA, closes BO-SA hatch and dons harnesses for docking; DV5 burn; automated rendezvous & docking via KURS-P in ISS and KURS-A in Soyuz; docking; pressure equalized between Soyuz and ISS ; crew transfers.

No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today.

CEO photography can be studied at this “Gateway” website: (as of 9/1/08, this database contained 770,668 views of the Earth from space, with 324,812 from the ISS alone).

Week 26 Scheduled Main Activities:

  • Mon. (10/13): SOLO #2; ODNT/LBNP OBT; PAO.
  • Tue. (10/14): TV prep.; Soyuz TMA-13/17S docking; Sokol dryout; KRIOGEM & KUBIK activate; Safety Briefing; Priority Transfers; Soyuz deact.; IWIS dwnl.; SODF update; SLEEP Actiwatch init.; VC15 Program.
  • Wed. (10/15): IMMUNE; SLEEP log; ISS-18 expmts.; VC15 Prgm.; Handovers ISS-18; AED inspect.; WRM CWC fill; OGS activ.; Ham; IP-1 check.
  • Thu. (10/16): ISS-18 expmts.; VC15 Prgm.; EDV replace; ULF-2 prepacking; Handovers ISS-18; WRM CWC audit; PEPS inspect.; Iridium recharge; IP-1 check.
  • Fri. (10/17): ISS-18 expmts.; VC15 Prgm.; PAO; GOGU tagup; ULF-2 prepacking; Handovers ISS-18; ODNT/LBNP OBT; IDZ-2 smoke detector mntn.; CMS sampling; IP-1 check.
  • Sat. (10/18): ISS-18 expmts.; VC15 Prgm.; BMP ch.1 regen.; GANK sampling; IP-1 check; FFQ; Handovers ISS-18; Symbolic Activity; OGS deact.; DOUG review for JEMRMS checkout.
  • Sun. (10/19): ISS-18 expmts.; VC15 Prgm.; Handovers ISS-18; BMP ch.2 regen.; JEMRMS DOUG review ; JEMRMS activities/checkout ; MBI-15 NEURO; O-OHA assess.; IP-1 check; Elektron BZh check.

ISS Orbit (as of this noon, 12:46pm EDT [= epoch]):
Mean altitude — 352.7 km
Apogee height — 355.3 km
Perigee height — 350.0 km
Period — 91.59 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0003925
Solar Beta Angle — -49.9 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
Mean altitude loss in the last 48 hours — 58 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 56702

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible.):
10/14/08 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S dock (FGB nadir port, ~4:33am EDT)
10/23/08 — Soyuz TMA-12/16S undock (DC1 nadir, 8:15pm) & land (11:36pm) = 10/24 — 9:36am Kazakhstan)
11/02/08 — Progress 30P reboost; Daylight Saving Time (DST) ends
11/14/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 launch – MPLM Leonardo, LMC
11/16/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 docking
11/20/08 — ISS 10 Years
11/25/08 — Progress M-65/30P undocking & deorbit
11/26/08 — Progress M-66/31P launch
11/30/08 — Progress M-66/31P docking
12/01/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 landing (~1:25pm EST est.)
02/09/09 — Progress M-66/31P undocking & deorbit
02/10/09 — Progress M-67/32P launch
02/12/09 — Progress M-67/32P docking
02/12/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment
02/14/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking
02/24/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking
02/26/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A landing (nominal)
03/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S launch
03/27/09 – Soyuz TMA-14/18S docking (DC1)
04/05/09 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S undocking
04/07/09 — Progress M-67/32P undocking & deorbit
05/15/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD
05/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S launch
05/27/09 — Six-person crew on ISS (following Soyuz 19S docking)
07/30/09 — STS-128/Atlantis/17A – MPLM(P), last crew rotation
10/15/09 — STS-129/Discovery/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/10/09 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
02/11/10 — STS-131/Atlantis/19A – MPLM(P)
04/08/10 — STS-132/Discovery/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM1
05/31/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC3, ELC4 (contingency).

SpaceRef staff editor.