Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 August 2009

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

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Sunday — Crew rest day. Ahead: Week 12 of Increment 20.

Upon wakeup, FE-1 Barratt, FE-2 Kopra, FE-4 Thirsk & FE-5 DeWinne continued their new experiment activity of SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight), logging data from their Actiwatch to the HRF-1 (Human Research Facility 1) laptop as part of a week-long session. [To monitor the crewmember’s sleep/wake patterns and light exposure, the crewmembers wear a special Actiwatch device which measures the light levels encountered by them as well as their patterns of sleep and activity throughout the Expedition and use the payload software for data logging and filling in questionnaire entries in the experiment’s laptop session file on the HRF-1 laptop. The log entries are done within 15 minutes of final awakening for seven consecutive days.]

Mike Barratt conducted another VolSci (Voluntary Weekend Science) sampling session with LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System) Phase 1 using only the LAL (Limulus amebocyte lysate) cartridges, setting up the equipment, preparing media and swabbing samples. [LOCAD uses small, thumb-sized “microfluidic” cartridges that are read by the experiment reader. The handheld device tests a new analysis technology by sampling for the presence of gram negative bacteria in the sample in about 15 minutes. Lab-on-a-Chip technology has an ever-expanding range of applications in the biotech industry. Chips are available (or in development) which can also detect yeast, mold, and gram positive bacteria, identify environmental contaminants, and perform quick health diagnostics in medical clinics. The technology has been used to swab the MERs (Mars Exploration Rovers) for planetary protection. With expanded testing on ISS, this compact technology has broad potential applications in space exploration–from monitoring environmental conditions to monitoring crew health. After today, there are nine sessions remaining to complete the planned science requirements.]

The FE-1 had the third day of his second SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity) session (low salt diet), which entails a series of diet intake loggings, body mass measurements and blood & urine samplings in two session blocks. [SOLO is composed of two sessions of six days each. From Day 1 to 5 (included) Mike will have to eat special diet (Session 1: High salt diet which corresponds to normal ISS diet salt level and Session 2: Low salt diet). Solo Diet starts with breakfast on Day 1. Day 6 of each session is diet-free. For both diets, specially prepared meals are provided onboard. All three daily meals are being logged on sheets stowed in the PCBA (Portable Clinical Blood Analyzer) Consumable Kit in the MELFI (Minus-Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS) along with control solution and cartridges for the PCBA. 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. Body mass is measured with the SLAMMD (Space Linear Acceleration Mass Measurement Device). Blood samples are taken with the PCBA. 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.]

With the US OGS (Oxygen Generator System) currently down, Roman Romanenko in the course of the day ignited three more end-of-certified-life SFOG (Solid Fuel Oxygen Generator) “candles” in the RS (Russian Segment). The Elektron O2 generator is operating also. [The SFOGs, used as oxygen source backup to the Elektron and OGS, generate O2 by decomposing cartridges of solid potassium perchlorate (KClO4) into potassium chloride (KCl) and O2 when heated at 450-500 degC. Each candle releases ~600 liters (1.74 lbs.) of O2, enough for one person per day.]

The CDR performed 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. [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.]

Padalka also checked up on the Russian POTOK-150MK (150 micron) air filter unit of the SM (Service Module)’s SOGS air revitalization subsystem, gathering weekly data on total operating time & “On” durations for reporting to TsUP-Moscow.

Barratt, Kopra, Thirsk & Padalka had 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), Gennady at ~5:35am, Timothy at ~10:20am, Mike at ~3:25pm, Bob at ~12:15pm, EDT.

At ~10:20am, Padalka & Romanenko engaged in a PAO TV interview with Ekaterina Beloglazova, Editor of Rossiysky Kosmos Magazine, an old friend of ISS cosmonauts. [“How did you survive the visit of 13 people to the ISS? Did you have any off-nominal situations and how did you cope with them? Did you have any pleasant surprises? Currently you are busy with many different experiments. Please give us more details. Which ones do you like the most? Did you manage to film anything new on Earth? Did you find any silver clouds? What item delivered by Progress did you enjoy the most? Japanese vehicle will arrive to the station in early September – tell us about it and preparation steps. What port will be used for its docking? Is it equipped with TORU? What will it deliver?”]
At ~2:00pm, the crew conducted a joint teleconference with crewmembers of the STS-128/17A mission.

The crew completed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical workout program on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation (CDR, FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-4, FE-5), and VELO cycle ergometer with bungee cord load trainer (CDR).

Kudos from POIC (Payload Operations Integration Center) to Crew: “Mike and Tim: Thank you for one of the best sessions we’ve had with SPHERES so far. We completed both MIT’s science goals and the LIS videos to help with STEM education (thank you for giving us the time to complete both). The science we did helps MIT, FIT, KSC, GSFC, and DoD. We were happy to see that you also noticed that everything went as advertised, showing not only that our tests work, but that having the crew supervise our science is good for interpreting results in real time. In summary, terrific session!”

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).

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
08/24/09 — STS-128/Discovery/17A launch – MPLM (P), LMC (~1:58am EDT)
09/10/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) launch (~1:04pm EDT)
09/16/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) berth w/SSRMS
09/29/09 — Progress 34P undock
09/30/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S launch
10/02/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S docking (SM aft, until MRM-2 w/new port)
10/11/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S undock
10/14/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) unberth
10/15/09 — Progress 35P launch
11/10/09 — 5R/MRM-2 (Russian Mini Research Module 2) on Soyuz-U
11/12/09 — STS-129/Atlantis/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/07/09 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S launch
12/26/09 — Progress 36P launch
02/03/10 — Progress 37P launch
02/04/10 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
03/18/10 — STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC
04/02/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch
04/27/10 — Progress 38P launch
05/14/10 — STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1
05/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch
06/25/10 — Progress 39P launch
07/29/10 — STS-133/Endeavour (ULF5 – ELC4, MPLM) or STS-134/Discovery (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS)
08/11/10 — Progress 40P launch
09/16/10 — STS-133/Endeavour (ULF5 – ELC4, MPLM) or STS-134/Discovery (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS)
09/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch
10/19/10 — Progress 41P launch
11/??/10 — ATV2 – Ariane 5 (ESA)
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton

SpaceRef staff editor.