Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 15 March 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
March 16, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 15 March 2009

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Sunday – off-duty day for CDR Fincke, FE-1 Lonchakov & FE-2 Magnus. Ahead: Week 21 of Increment 18.

With STS-119/Discover/15A launch set for tonight (7:43:40pm EDT), the crew’s wake period continues shifting back from yesterday (5:30am-9:00pm EDT) to adjust to Discovery’s arrival on 3/17 and the subsequent docked period (see Wake/Sleep Schedule, below).

FE-1 Lonchakov prepared for an upcoming session with the geophysical GFI-1 Relaksatsiya ("relaxation") experiment by initiating recharging the SONY DVCAM-150 video camcorder for the experiment. [Using the Fialka UVC (Ultraviolet Video Camera) Relaksatsiya deals with the study of the chemoluminescent chemical reactions and atmospheric light phenomena (emissions, i.e., molecular relaxation processes), including those that occur during high-velocity interaction between the exhaust products from space vehicles and the atmosphere at orbital altitude and during the entry of space vehicles into the Earth’s upper atmosphere. “Relaxation”, in Physics, is the transition of an atom or molecule from a higher energy level to a lower one, emitting radiative energy in the process as equilibrium is achieved.]

Lonchakov will also perform the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM, including the weekly collection of the toilet flush (SP) counter and water supply (SVO) readings for calldown to TsUP-Moscow. Additionally, Yuri is to check up on 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. [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.]

Afterwards, the FE-1 is scheduled to tag up with ground specialists to discuss the planned installation of a new “Istochnik” (“spring”, “source”) system for transmitting telemetry from Soyuz spacecraft. The equipment was brought up on Progress 32P.

The station residents will be working out on their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical exercise program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1/2.5h, FE-2) and ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2).

Later today, the CDR & FE-2 will have their weekly PFCs (Private Family Conferences), via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop), Mike at ~1:35pm EDT, Sandy at ~2:40pm.

ISS Crew Sleep Shifting: To synchronize the ISS crew’s timeline with STS-119/15A arrival and docked period, the station wake/sleep cycle is again undergoing a number of shifts which started on 3/7. For the next few days, the schedule is as follows, based on a liftoff time of 7:34pm tonight:


Wake: 5:30am – 9:00pm EDT


Wake: 7:49am – 12:24am 3/17


Wake: 8:54am – 12:14am 3/18


Wake: 8:44am – 11:44pm


Wake: 8:14am – 11:14pm


Wake: 7:44am – 11:14pm


Wake: 7:44am – 10:44pm


Wake: 7:14am – 10:14pm


Wake: 6:44am – 9:44pm


Wake: 6:14am – 9:44pm


Wake: 6:14am – 8:59pm

No CEO (Crew Earth Observations) 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).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 5:35am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude — 354.7 km
Apogee height — 361.0 km
Perigee height — 348.3 km
Period — 91.63 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0009475
Solar Beta Angle — 46.9 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 65 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 59119

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
03/15/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment — 7:43:40pm EDT
03/17/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking — 5:13pm EDT
03/23/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking
03/25/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A deorbit & landing
03/26/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S launch (7:49am EDT)
03/28/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S docking (SM aft port; 9:14am EDT)
04/07/09 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S undocking (1:02am) & landing (4:20am EDT)
05/06/09 — Progress 32P undocking & deorbit
05/07/09 — Progress 33P launch
05/12/09 — STS-125/Atlantis Hubble Space Telescope Service Mission 4 (SM4)
05/12/09 — Progress 33P docking
05/15/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD
05/27/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S launch
05/29/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S docking (FGB nadir)
Six-person crew on ISS
07/17/09 — Progress 33P undock & deorbit
07/20/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S relocation (to DC1)
07/24/09 — Progress 34P launch
07/26/09 — Progress 34P docking (SM aft)
08/06/09 — STS-128/Discovery/17A – MPLM (P), LMC
09/01/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) — tentative
11/10/09 — Soyuz 5R/MRM2 (Russian Mini Research Module, MIM2) on Soyuz — tentative
11/12/09 — STS-129/Atlantis/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/10/09 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola — tentative
02/11/10 — STS-131/Atlantis/19A – MPLM(P), LMC — tentative
04/08/10 — STS-132/Discovery/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM1 — tentative
05/31/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC3, ELC4 — tentative
12/XX/11 — Proton 3R/MLM w/ERA.

SpaceRef staff editor.