Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 April 2012

By SpaceRef Editor
April 16, 2012
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 April 2012
NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 April 2012

ISS On-Orbit Status 04/16/12

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 21 of Increment 30 (six-person crew).

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-1 also completed the weekly checkup behind ASU/toilet panel 139 in the SM of a fluid connector (MNR-NS) of the SM-U urine collection system, looking for potential moisture.

Shkaplerov, Ivanishin & Kononenko completed the periodic pre-breakfast session of the Russian biomedical routine assessment PZEh-MO-7/Calf Volume Measurement. Afterwards, Anton, Anatoly & Oleg were joined by Dan, André & Don in completing the PZEh-MO-8/Body Mass Measurement using the IMT mass measurement device, set up (and later cleaned up and stowed away) by Shkaplerov. [For determining body mass in zero-G, where things are weightless but not massless, the Russian IMT “scales” for MO-8 measure the inertial forces that arise during the oscillatory motion of a mass driven by two helical metering springs with known spring constants. By measuring the time period of each oscillation of the unknown mass (the crewmember) and comparing it to the period of a known mass, the crewmember’s mass is calculated by the computer and displayed. MO-7 Calf measurements (left leg only) are taken with the IZOG device, a custom-sewn fabric cuff that fits over the calf, using the knee and lower foot as fixed reference pints, to provide a rough index of deconditioning in zero-G and effectiveness of countermeasures. ]

In preparation for their return on 4/27, Shkaplerov, Ivanishin & Burbank conducted the standard leak checks of their Sokol pressure suits. Afterwards, Anton & Anatoly set suits and gloves up for drying out.

In the DC1 Docking Compartment, Oleg Kononenko configured the usual pumping equipment (compressor #41, hoses, adapters) and initiated the transfer of urine from 3 EDV-U containers (#921, #992, #955) to the BV2 Rodnik storage tank of Progress M-14M/46P (#414) at DC1 Nadir. The transfer equipment was then torn down and some of it discarded as trash. [Each of the spherical Rodnik tanks BV1 & BV2 consists of a hard shell with a soft membrane (bladder) composed of elastic fluoroplastic. The bladder is used to expel water from the tank by compressed air pumped into the tank volume surrounding the membrane and is leak-tested before urine transfers, i.e., with empty tanks, the bladders are expanded against the tank walls and checked for hermeticity.]

After conducting a teleconference with ground personnel at SSIPC (Space Station Integration & Promotion Center)/Tsukuba for discussing the new JAXA EPO (Education Payload Operation) Space Sound experiment, André Kuipers & Don Pettit jointly performed the experiment, creating sounds for recording on the G1 video camcorder, 3D Mic and audio recorder, answering a questionnaire and then transferring the recordings to an SSC (Station Support Computer) for downlink, before dismantling the equipment. [Objective of JAXA EPO (Education Payload Operation) “Space Sound” is to do a survey on how crews hear & feel the sound from a “Sound Emitting Object” in space by using 3D Mic and Recorder. 3D Mic has a microphone at each of 8 corners to record the spatial directionality of the sound emitted by the crewmember, and the audio recorder has a binaural microphone with ear pads to record the sound at the ears so as to re-experience the orbital circumstances on the ground. Sounds are generated by rubbing a stick against a copper alloy bowl (the “Sound Emitting Object”), followed by answering some survey questions. André & Don performed two experiments, one with FE-5 wearing the binaural mic, creating sound and releasing the Sound Emitting Object for free floating while being observed by FE-6 to ensure that the object and 3D Mic did not touch anything and remained within 1 m radius, the other by switching roles and repeating the experiment.]

The CDR conducted routine maintenance on the WRS (Water Recovery System) using the LFTP (Low Flow Transfer Pump) to transfer one CWC-I (-Iodine) to the WPA (Water Processor Assembly) and offloading it, using a particulate filter. [Estimated offload time: ~3 hrs; max. allowed quantity: 89%].

Other activities completed by Dan Burbank included –

* Working in COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) on the SODI (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument) hardware in the MSG WV (Microgravity Science Glovebox Work Volume) to prepare DSC (Diffusion Soret Coefficient) Flash Disks 4 & 5 for return on Soyuz 28S; [the ESA SODI experiment has three parts, IVIDIL, DSC & Colloid, for advanced research in vibration effects on diffusion in liquids, diffusion measurements in petroleum reservoirs and the study on growth and properties of advanced photonic materials within colloidal solutions, respectively],
* Performing annual maintenance discharge/recharge on the EMU (Extravehicular Mobility Unit) batteries in the A/L BSA (Airlock Battery Stowage Assembly);
* Setting up the equipment for his 5th (R-15) session of the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) Ambulatory Monitoring assessment, scheduled tomorrow; [ICV activities consist of two separate but related parts over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there will be fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months). The FD75 echo scan includes an exercise component with a second scan (subset of the first) completed within 5 minutes after the end of exercise. The primary objective of the accompanying CCISS (Cardiovascular Control on return from the ISS) experiment is to maximize the information about changes in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular function that might compromise the ability of astronauts to meet the challenge of return to an upright posture on Earth], and
* Servicing the DECLIC (Device for the Study of Critical Liquids & Crystallization) experiment in ER4 (EXPRESS Rack 4) by uncabling the experiment and transferring it with its power & data cables to a locker in ER7, a simple one-for-one swap; [The French (CNES)/NASA-sponsored DECLIC is a multi-user facility to investigate low & high temperature critical fluids behavior, chemical reactivity in supercritical water, directional solidification of transparent alloys, and more generally transparent media under micro-gravity environment.]

Anton Shkaplerov took data readings from the running Russian BAOK GANK Real-Time Monitoring Analyzer unit for measuring concentration of harmful contaminants in the air of the RS (Russian Segment). [The BAOK gas analyzer, a subsystem of the SKDS Pressure Control & Atmosphere Monitoring System, determines concentrations of CH4 (methane), NH3 (ammonia), CO (carbon monoxide), HCN (hydrogen cyanide), HF (hydrofluoric acid) and NO2 (nitric oxide) from air samples using electrochemical sensors, with measurements displayed on LCD (liquid crystal display) and stored on tapes.]

Later, FE-1 had ~1.5 h reserved to gather equipment & tools in preparation for tomorrow’s scheduled R&R (Removal & Replacement) of the KhSA Cooler/Dehumidifier Assembly’s fan box in the TMA-22/28S spacecraft’s SA (Descent Module).

Oleg meanwhile continued the periodic inspection of surface conditions of RS (Russian Segment) structural elements (begun on 3/13), today in the PrK Transfer Tunnel. The evaluation focused on selected plates of the Resurs sensor system inside the PrK, by measuring electrical conductivity using the MVP-2K device. Support was provided by ground specialist tagup. [Resurs measuring locations are on the spherical shell of the PrK Transfer Tunnel, on the shell of the PkhO Transfer Compartment and on the inside shells of Zvezda’s RO-1 & RO-2 (large & small diameter) sections.]

In the Lab, André Kuipers accessed the NanoRacks Modules and collected data for subsequent transfer to the ER-1 (EXPRESS Rack 1) laptop.

Afterwards, Kuipers closed the protective shutters of the Lab, Node-3/Cupola & JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) windows to prevent their contamination during today’s Progress 46P propellant purging at 7:50am EDT. [For the Progress prop purge, ISS attitude control authority was handed over to Russian MCS (Motion Control System) thrusters at ~7:45am and returned to US CMG (Control Moment Gyro) momentum management at ~10:15am.]

FE-6 Pettit deactivated the ALTEA (Anomalous Long Term Effects on Astronauts) Shield radiation dosimetry payload in ER2 (EXPRESS Rack 2) and later restarted its dosimetry data collection.

Don also set up the JAXA SSHDT (Super Sensitive High Definition TV) in the Node-3/Cupola for taking another video of Japan night views with the zoom lens, then dismantled the SSHDTV equipment and transferred it to the JPM for stowage.

With its FSS photo spectrograph battery freshly charged in the morning, FE-4 Kononenko set up the Russian GFI-8 “Uragan” (hurricane) earth-imaging program with FSS science hardware at SM window #9, taking pictures of targets along the flight track during a 30-minute segment, covering Patagonian ice fields and the Upsala glacier. [The FSS (Fotospektralnaya sistema) consists of an image recording module with lens and a spectroradiometer module with an electronics module. FSS includes the ME Electronics Module & MRI Image Recording Module.]

FE-1 & FE-2 continued the current round of periodic preventive maintenance of RS ventilation systems, with Anton cleaning the V3 fan grill in MRM2 Poisk, and Anatoly cleaning “Group B” fan screens in the MRM1 “Rassvet” module.

Afterwards, Anatoly completed another 30-min. session for the DZZ-13 “Seiner” ocean observation program, obtaining HDV (Z1) camcorder footage of color bloom patterns in the waters of the South-Eastern Pacific, then copying the images to the RSK-1 laptop.

André Kuipers started another sampling run with the AQM (Air Quality Monitor), deactivating the system ~5 hrs later. [Consisting of the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health Systems Gas Chromatograph / Differential Mobility Spectrometer), the system is controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC (Station Support Computer)-12 laptop. The AQM demonstrates COTS (Commercial Off-the-Shelf) technology for identifying volatile organic compounds, similar to the VOA (Volatile Organics Analyzer). This evaluation will continue over the course of several months as it helps to eventually certify the GC/DMS as nominal CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) hardware.]

Oleg broke out & readied the equipment for his and André’s 3rd session with the periodic Russian MedOps test “Hematokrit” (MO-10), to be conducted tomorrow right after wake-up. [MO-10 measures the red cell count of the blood. It is a well-known phenomenon of space flight that red blood cell count (normal range: 30-45%) tends to go down over time.]

Oleg also 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).

Anton 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.]

André & Don joined up for another 2-hr SpaceX Dragon Rendezvous & Capture OBT (Onboard Training) session, using the laptop ROBoT simulator application.

Afterwards, the crewmembers connected the Lab RWS DCP (Robotic Workstation Display & Control Panel) bypass cable, and André later conducted the regular pre-flight checkout of that RWS for viewing by the ground during the ground-commanded SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) operations later today (checking out motion in Dragon capture volume).

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

At ~3:30pm, the crew is scheduled for their standard bi-weekly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office/CB (Peggy Whitson), via S-band S/G-2 audio & phone patch.

Burbank had another time slot reserved for making entries in his electronic Journal on the personal SSC. [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]

Before Presleep, the CDR 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, Dan 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), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2, FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-1, FE-2, FE-5, FE-6), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR, FE-6). [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. No exercise is being timelined for Fridays. Today’s SPRINT exercise called for ARED+T2K. 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.]

FE-6 Pettit performed a session of the Treadmill Kinematics program on the T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill, setting up the HD camcorder in Node-1, placing tape markers on his body, recording a calibration card in the FOV (Field of View) and then conducting the workout run within a specified speed range. The video was then downlinked by Don via MPC. [Purpose of the Kinematics T2 experiment is to collect quantitative data by motion capture from which to assess current exercise prescriptions for participating ISS crewmembers. Detailed biomechanical analyses of locomotion will be used to determine if biomechanics differ between normal and microgravity environments and to determine how combinations of external loads and exercise speed influence joint loading during in-flight treadmill exercise. Such biomechanical analyses will aid in understanding potential differences in gait motion and allow for model-based determination of joint & muscle forces during exercise. The data will be used to characterize differences in specific bone and muscle loading during locomotion in the two gravitational conditions. By understanding these mechanisms, appropriate exercise prescriptions can be developed that address deficiencies.]

After Dan’s T2 session, Anatoly Ivanishin closed down the T2 software on its laptop for data transfer, then turned off the T2 display. [After the display shutdown, the T2 rack is power cycled (turned off/on) from the ground, and T2 is then ready for use. These power cycles allow for the T2 data to be transferred to the Server for downlink.]

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 the Volcanoes Idzhen, Hudson, Huascaran, Arenal, Poas & San Cristobal, Hong Kong, Darwin Island, and the Patagonian 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, 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).

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

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:23am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 392.4 km
Apogee height – 397.5 km
Perigee height – 387.2 km
Period — 92.40 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0007617
Solar Beta Angle — 46.7 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.58
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 82 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 76,840
Time in orbit (station) — 4896 days
Time in orbit (crews, cum.) — 4183 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.