Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 16 February 2009

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

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 17 of Increment 18. US Holiday (President’s Day).

CDR Fincke, FE-2 Magnus & Lonchakov began their workday before breakfast with the periodic session of the Russian biomedical routine assessments PZEh-MO-7/Calf Volume Measurement and, for the FE-1, PZEh-MO-8/Body Mass Measurement, using the IM mass measurement device which Mike also uses for his SOLO session. [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. For determining body mass in zero-G, where things are weightless but not massless, the Russian IM "scales" 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.]

Later, Lonchakov undertook his third periodic (generally monthly) health test with the cardiological experiment PZEh MO-1 (“Study of the Bioelectric Activity of the Heart at Rest”) on the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation System), with Mike Fincke assisting as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). [Equipment used were VPG/Temporal Pulsogram and ECG/Electrocardiogram Data Output Devices (USI). During the 30-min. test, the FE-1 tagged up with ground specialists on an RGS (Russian Groundsite) pass at ~3:35am EST (DO4) via VHF for data downlink from the VPG and Gamma-1M ECG for about 5-6 minutes.]

To integrate the newly arrived Progress M-66/32P, docked at the DC1 nadir port, into ISS systems for the subsequent cargo transfer activities, Lonchakov installed the LKT local temperature sensor switch (TA251M1B) of the BITS2-12 onboard telemetry system and its ROM/read-only memory unit (PZU TA765B), both kept in storage from an earlier vehicle.

The CDR & FE-1 later accessed the Progress cargo ship and started unloading and transferring its contents to the ISS for about 2 hrs, while logging the moves in the IMS (Inventory Management System).

Mike Fincke worked in the Lab troubleshooting the EHS VOA (Environmental Health System – Volatile Organic Analyzer) which has refused to start up from 12/17 last year. Fincke replaced the VOA hard disk and checked out the unit’s OMIs (On-Orbit Maintenance Items). [While viewing downlink video, ground controllers noted early in the procedure that the Inlet Nozzle Filter was floating freely. The expected configuration was for it to be installed on the VOA, and there is a potential for debris having entered the VOA. The CDR replaced the Inlet Nozzle Filter per procedure.]

The FE-2 had ~50 min set aside to perform routine maintenance (inspection & screen cleaning) on the FGB ventilation system. [Replaced were filters in the PS1 & PS2 dust collectors, with changes logged in the IMS (Inventory Management System).]

The FE-1 unstowed and retrieved the MBRL (PCE) proximity communications and BRTK control equipment used in the SM (Service Module) for ATV (Automated Transfer Vehicle) proximity operations, preparing the hardware and SM panels 226 & 227 for upcoming checkout activities. [The planned testing of the PCE antenna feeder transmitters, using the FSH3 spectrum analyzer from the GTS (Global Timing System) and R&S FSH-Z44 directional power-level detector, is scheduled on 2/18. The main MBRL components are the space-to-space radio “monoblock” (PCE Z0000), the antenna switching control box (BUAP), and the ATV control panel (PU).]

Sandy Magnus had 2 hrs for taking special photographic shots with the D2X digital cameras for Photosynth mapping in the FGB, Lab, Node-1, Node-2, Airlock, Columbus, Kibo JPM and JLP. [Photosynth is a Microsoft-developed process to turn series of photos into 3-D panoramic vistas. Photosynth allows everyone (except Mac users) to create unique panoramas or "synths" using their own photos. Photosynth was already used by NASA last year for RPM (R-bar Pitch Maneuver) photography of the Orbiter underside. It is being used to create a 3-D rendering of the ISS’s interior for training purposes, so astronauts familiarize themselves with their new home before they get there.]

Mike Fincke had Day 2 of his daily diet monitoring for the SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity) experiment. SOLO runs in two blocks of six days each, currently on Session 2. [During the Session 1 block, the CDR followed a special low-salt diet, during the current Session 2 a high-salt diet. For both diets, specially prepared meals are provided onboard. All three daily meals will be 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.]

Magnus gathered empty CTBs (Cargo Transfer Bags) and installed them as protection on Node-1 nadir hatch systems to prevent damage to the vulnerable hatch mechanisms during ingress, egress and ARED exercise, per crew recommendation. [Sandy covered the hatch crank handle, stowage latch handle and MPEV (Manual Pressure Equalization Valve) with CTBs (Cargo Transfer Bags) filled with clean, spare laundry or towels to protect the hardware from inadvertent contact by crewmembers exercising on ARED.]

The FE-1 conducted tests on the PDA-BCR (Personal Digital Assistant-Bar Code Reader) in the RS (Russian Segment), used for IMS updating. [Objective: to evaluate the operability of the PDA-BCR via wireless network in the cargo compartment of Progress M-66.]

Working from his discretionary “time permitting” task list, Lonchakov also conducted the regular daily IMS maintenance task by updating/editing the IMS standard “delta file” including stowage locations for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

Magnus 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 performing US condensate processing (transfer from CWC to EDV containers) if condensate is available.]

Yuri set up eight new Bubble dosimeters for recording radiation traces as an additional component of the RS (Russian Segment) radiation payload suite “Matryoshka-R” (RBO-3-2), initializing and deploying the detectors. Proper function of the setup was later verified with the LULIN-5 electronics box. [The setup was photo-documented with the NIKON D2X camera and also reported to TsUP via log sheet via OCA. The complex Matryoshka payload suite is designed for sophisticated radiation studies. Note: Matryoshka is also the name for the traditional Russian set of nested dolls.]

The station residents completed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical workout program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1, FE-2), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2) and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1).

No CEO 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, 4:51am EST [= epoch]):
Mean altitude — 356.2 km
Apogee height — 362.3 km
Perigee height — 350.1 km
Period — 91.66 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0009086
Solar Beta Angle — -50.3 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 61 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 58695

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
02/20/09 — FRR (Flight Readiness Review) for STS-119/Discovery
02/27/09? — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment — “NOT EARLIER THAN”
02/29/09? — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking
03/10/09? — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking
03/13/09? — STS-119/Discovery/15A landing
03/26/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S launch
03/28/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S docking (DC1)
04/07/09 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S undocking
04/07/09 — Progress 32P undocking & deorbit
05/12/09 — STS-125/Atlantis Hubble Space Telescope Service Mission 4 (SM4)
05/15/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD
05/27/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S launch
Six-person crew on ISS
08/06/09 — STS-128/Discovery/17A – MPLM (P), LMC, last crew rotation
08/XX/09 — Soyuz 5R/MRM2 (Russian Mini Research Module, MIM2) on Soyuz
09/XX/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1)
11/12/09 — STS-129/Atlantis/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/10/09 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
02/11/10 — STS-131/Atlantis/19A – MPLM(P), LMC
04/08/10 — STS-132/Discovery/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM1
05/31/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC3, ELC4
12/XX/11– Proton 3R/MLM w/ERA.

SpaceRef staff editor.