Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 17 February 2011

By SpaceRef Editor
February 17, 2011
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 17 February 2011

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.

Sleep shift: Wake – 5:00am; Sleep – 4:30pm (returning to normal)

FE-4 Kondratyev conducted the regular daily early-morning check of the aerosol filters at the Russian Elektron O2 generator which Maxim Suraev had installed on 10/19/09 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). [Dmitri will inspect the filters again before bedtime tonight, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

At wake-up, FE-2 Skripochka terminated his 12th experiment session, started last night, for the long-term Russian sleep study MBI-12/Sonokard, taking the recording device from his Sonokard sports shirt pocket and later copying the measurements to the RSE-Med laptop for subsequent downlink to the ground. [Sonokard objectives are stated to (1) study the feasibility of obtaining the maximum of data through computer processing of records obtained overnight, (2) systematically record the crewmember’s physiological functions during sleep, (3) study the feasibility of obtaining real-time crew health data. Investigators believe that contactless acquisition of cardiorespiratory data over the night period could serve as a basis for developing efficient criteria for evaluating and predicting adaptive capability of human body in long-duration space flight.]

CDR Kelly continued his current week-long activity with the post-wakeup experiment SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight), Scott’s 8th session, transferring data from his Actiwatch to the HRF-1 (Human Research Facility 1) laptop. [To monitor their sleep/wake patterns and light exposure during a SLEEP session, US crewmembers wear a special Actiwatch device which measures the light levels encountered by him/her as well as their patterns of sleep and activity throughout the Expedition, using 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.]

FE-5 Nespoli updated his daily diet log for his 2nd six-day SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity) session, which entails diet intake loggings (low salt diet), body mass measurements and blood & urine samplings. [SOLO is composed of two sessions of six days each. From Day 1 to 5 (included) Paolo ingested a special High Salt diet (which corresponds to normal ISS diet salt level), on Session 2 he switched to a Low salt diet. SOLO Diets start 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 logged daily on sheets stowed in the PCBA Consumable Kit in the MELFI along with control solution and cartridges for the PCBA. Body mass is measured with the SLAMMD (Space Linear Acceleration Mass Measurement Device) on Days 4 & 6. Blood samples are taken on Day 5, centrifuged & inserted in MELFI (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS) and also measured with the PCBA. 24-hr urine collections are performed on Day 5, with sample insertion in MELFI. Background: SOLO, a NASA/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. 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.]

In final close-out activities after yesterday’s Orlan EVA-28, Kaleri worked in the DC1 Docking Compartment nadir port to re-integrate the Progress M-09M/41P (#409) cargo ship, which had been in contingency undock configuration, with the ISS by –
* Conducting a leak check on the DC1/41P vestibule (DO attitude control thrusters temporarily inhibited),
* Opening the DC1-SU & SU-41P hatches and installing the QD (quick disconnect) screw clamps (BZV) of the docking & internal transfer mechanism (SSVP) to rigidize the coupling,
* Deactivating the cargo ship,
* Installing the ventilation/heating air duct, and
* Dismantling the docking mechanism (StM, Stykovochnovo mekhanizma) between the cargo ship and the SM [StM is the “classic” probe-and-cone type, consisting of an active docking assembly (ASA) with a probe (SSh), which fits into the cone (SK) on the passive docking assembly (PSA) for initial soft dock and subsequent retraction to hard dock. The ASA is mounted on the Progress’ cargo module (GrO), while the PSA sits on the docking ports of the SM, FGB and DC-1].

Final post-EVA closeout activities by FE-2 Skripochka & FE-4 Kondratyev were –
* Setting up the Orlan-MK suits, gloves, umbilicals and BSS interface units for drying out.
* Returning the EVA emergency first-aid medical packs, staged temporarily in the PkhO (Transfer Compartment) and DC1, to their original stowage sites in the SM med locker and Soyuz spacecraft,
* Removing the BNP #3 (portable air repress bottle 3) from the SM RO for stowage;
* Downloading the EVA photographs from the NIKON D2Xs cameras to the SSC-15 (Station Support Computer 15) U drive for subsequent OCA downlink;
* Setting up the first Orlan-MK 825-M3 battery pack in the ZU-S recharge unit for discharge and starting discharge,
* Taking radiation readings from the Orlan-carried PILLE dosimeters,
* Refilling the Orlan feedwater bladders,
* Checking out the Orlan-MK spacesuits, and
* Completing Orlan and BSS Orlan Interface Unit equipment storage activities.

At ~7:10am EST, Oleg & Dmitri also were debriefed by ground specialists in a one-hour closeout conference.

CDR Kelly completed a session with the U.S. VIS (Visual Acuity) testing program, using an eye chart for both far & near visual acuity and filling out an eye questionnaire, to be downloaded on a laptop for ground access.

Kelly also performed another weekly 10-min. CWC (Contingency Water Container) inventory as part of the on-going WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated “cue cards” based on the crew’s water calldowns are sent up every other week for recording changes. [The new card (26-0045H) lists 114 CWCs (2,310.4 L total) for the five types of water identified on board: 1. technical water (19 CWCs with 761.3 L, for Elektron electrolysis, incl. 433.3 L in 11 bags containing Wautersia bacteria, 134.2 L in 3 clean bags for contingency use, 170.8 L in 4 bags for transfer into EDV-RP containers via US/RSA-B hose, and 23.0 L in 1 bag for flushing only; 2. potable water (no CWCs); 3. iodinated water (83 CWCs with 1,516.9 L for reserve; 4. condensate water (6.3 L in 1 bag to be used only for OGA, plus 9 empty bags); and 5. waste/EMU dump and other (25.9 L in 2 CWCs from hose/pump flush). Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

Later, Scott closed the protective shutters of the Lab, Node-3/Cupola and Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) science windows. [Precaution against contamination from RS (Russian Segment) thrusters which temporarily took over control at ~12:45pm for Progress 39P fuel (ZUG) and oxidizer (ZUO) line purge (~12:50am). This also required Port & Stbd SARJ (Solar Alpha Rotary Joint) to be feathered temporarily (solar array wings locked to face Russian thrusters edge-on). Propellant line purge is part of the normal preparations for subsequent Progress vehicle undocking, scheduled on 2/20 for 39P.]

Kaleri & Nespoli conducted a one-hour OBT (Onboard Training) exercise simulating ATV2 (Automated Transfer Vehicle 2) rendezvous & docking, including subsequent downlinking of the resulting simulation log files. A debrief tagup with ground specialists followed at ~12:45pm. [OBT objectives: Practice crew actions in the event of an off-nominal situation while monitoring rendezvous and docking, refresh rendezvous and docking monitoring skills, and practice crew interaction during rendezvous and docking monitoring.]

Scott Kelly & Cady Coleman worked for several hours on the HTV2 (H-II Transfer Vehicle), making preparations for its relocation tomorrow morning from Node-2 nadir port to zenith port. [After Cady had removed PEP (Portable Emergency Provisions) systems (i.e., PBA/Portable Breathing Apparatus, PFE/Portable Fire Extinguisher and R&MA/Restraint & Mobility Aid) from the HTV PLC (Pressurized Logistic Carrier), she and Scott closed the hatch, then demated the PLC Vestibule (disconnecting ARS/Atmosphere Revitalization, IMV/Intermodular Ventilation, 1553A & 1553B jumpers and partially installing the PCBM/Passive CBM thermal cover), they checked the CBM CPA (Common Berthing Mechanism / Controller Panel Assembly) J5 connector by removing its backshell, taking documentary photography and replacing the backshell, fastening it with tape, and then installed the CPA. Finally, the Node 2 camcorder was configured to support PCBM survey by the ground.]

Paolo Nespoli removed the spare Pump/Separator ORU (Orbit Replaceable Unit) from the HTV2 (loc. F1) and stowed it in the JAXA JLP (JEM Logistics Pressurized Segment) at Rack P1, front.

FE-6 Coleman performed the periodic offload of the WPA (Water Processor Assembly) from the PWD (Potable Water Dispenser) Auxiliary Port into one of the CWC-I (Contingency Water Containers-Iodine) with the common H2O Transfer Hose (which took about 23 min), then flushed the system.

Cady also conducted the weekly “T+2d” in-flight microbiology analyses of the potable water samples collected on 2/15 from the EHS PWD (Environmental Health Systems / Potable Water Dispenser) Ambient port for in-flight analysis. [In-flight sample analysis was performed with the WMK MCD (Water Microbiology Kit/Microbial Capture Devices) for microbial traces, and the CDB (Coliform Detection Bag) for in-flight coliform bacteria (Escherichia coli) detection (Magenta for Positive, Yellow for Negative). Results of the on-board processing with the MWAK are available after 4-6 days of incubation.]

Later, FE6 completed the periodic snubber inspection on the T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill. [Photos have shown that the T2 rack is not fully centered. Because of this, T2 may experience more bumping which can damage the hardware and disrupt microgravity requirements. Before scheduling a centering activity, engineers will closely monitor rack bumping data to see if it goes outside acceptable limits. To maximize data yield for analysis, prescribed T2 automated protocols have been modified so that the stages are 60 seconds in duration. The crew can also run in manual mode but will be asked to complete one protocol twice a month.]

After pointing the VCA2 (Video Camera Assembly 2) toward the MLU2 (Module Lighting Unit 2) and EPO GH (Educational Payload Operation Greenhouse) and starting a live video downlink from COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), FE-5 Nespoli activated the hardware containing Arabidopsis seeds and watered the chamber for demonstration. [Greenhouse has two growth chambers, one containing Arabidopsis (Rockcress, related to mustard in the Brassicaceae plant family), the other lettuce seeds. Paolo initiated the latter yesterday on video.]

Before sleeptime, Dmitri Kondratyev will prepare the Russian MBI-12 payload and start his 7th Sonokard experiment session, using a sports shirt from the Sonokard kit with a special device in the pocket for testing a new method for acquiring physiological data without using direct contact on the skin. Measurements are recorded on a data card for return to Earth. [Sonokard objectives are stated to (1) study the feasibility of obtaining the maximum of data through computer processing of records obtained overnight, (2) systematically record the crewmember’s physiological functions during sleep, (3) study the feasibility of obtaining real-time crew health data. Investigators believe that contactless acquisition of cardiorespiratory data over the night period could serve as a basis for developing efficient criteria for evaluating and predicting adaptive capability of human body in long-duration space flight.]

The crew worked out on a reduced physical exercise protocol (because of the shorter work day), on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR), and VELO ergometer bike with load trainer (FE-4).

FE-2 & FE-4 had their weekly PMCs (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video, Oleg at ~11:50am, Dmitri at ~1:25pm EST.

At ~5:25am, Nespoli powered up the SM’s amateur radio equipment (Kenwood VHF transceiver with manual frequency selection, headset, & power supply) and at 5:30am conducted a ham radio session with students at Istituto di Istruzione Superiore “Claudio Varalli”, Milano, Italy.

At ~8:25am, CDR Kelly & FE-5 Nespoli supported an ESA PAO TV event at the Erasmus Centre in Noordwijk, Netherlands, discussing the new “Greenhouse in Space” activity. The 20-min exchange with students was moderated on the ground by Melanie Cowen of ESA/ESTEC.

At ~12:25pm, Paolo conducted a tagup with the ESA staff at Col-CC at Oberpfaffenhofen/Germany. [This conference is scheduled once every week, between ISS crewmembers and Col-CC via S/G2 (Space-to-Ground 2) audio.]

Launch of ATV Johannes Kepler: Last evening (2/16), at Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou/French Guiana an Ariane 5 launch vehicle carrying “Johannes Kepler”, ESA’s second ATV (Automated Transfer Vehicle), lifted off flawlessly at 4:50pm EST (6:50pm local). About 64 minutes into flight, ATV2 separated safely from the spent upper stage and then deployed its four solar wings, beginning early orbit operations for its climb to the ISS, adjusting its orbit with numerous thruster burns to rendezvous with the station for docking on Thursday, 2/24 (10:46am EST). Weighing about 20 tons at launch, the unmanned supply ship will deliver critical supplies to the ISS (1600 kg dry cargo, 100 kg oxygen & 850 kg ISS refuel propellants propellant, plus 4534 kg propellant for reboost & attitude control). It will also reboost the station during its almost four-month mission. This launch marks the 200th flight of an Ariane vehicle since the debut of 12/24/1979. The total includes 11 flights of Ariane 1, 6 flights of Ariane 2, 11 flights of Ariane 3, 116 flights of Ariane 4 (from 1988 to 2003) and 56 flights of Ariane 5 (from 1996). Integration for the next ATV in line, named “Edoardo Amaldi”, will be finished in Europe in August 2011, and production is under way for ATV-4 and -5. “Edoardo Amaldi” is planned for launch in about 12 months. The other two will follow by 2014. After “Johannes Kepler”‘s docking on 2/24, ISS will for the first time have all logistics vehicles of the international partnership docked at the same time: the U.S. Shuttle, one Russian Progress cargo ship, two Russian Soyuz spacecraft, Japan’s HTV (H-II Transfer Vehicle) and Europe’s ATV, truly a moment of historic significance.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today were Santiago, Chile (fair weather was expected for this early morning pass over the Chilean capital. As ISS approached the coast from the NW, the crew was to begin looking nadir for an interior valley with this city of nearly 6 million. CEO researchers are seeking views of the entire urban area within a single frame), Gaborone, Botswana (this capital city of about 200,000 is located near the southeastern border of the country on the Notwane River. ISS pass was in late afternoon light with fair weather conditions expected. As the station tracked northeastward over the northern hills of the Republic of South Africa, the crew was to look just left of track for the city just north of a sizeable reservoir), and Indus River Valley Cities at Night (the crew had a 4-minute, early evening pass in fair weather offering a good opportunity for viewing the lights of the major cities of the Indus River valley in central Pakistan. At this time, after tracking northeastward over the relative darkness of the Arabian Sea, they were to begin looking nadir and slightly either side of track for views of the illumination of major urban areas).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:34am EST [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 351.8 km
Apogee height – 354.9 km
Perigee height – 348.8 km
Period — 91.58 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0004511
Solar Beta Angle — 39.5 deg (magnitude peaking)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
Mean altitude gain in the last 24 hours – 40 m (EVA-28 effect)
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 70,207.

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
————–Six-crew operations————-
02/18/11 — HTV2 unberth & relocation to Node-2 zenith port – 6:30am
02/20/11 — Progress M-07M/39P undock, deorbit (8:12am/11:12am)
02/24/11 — ATV-2 “Johannes Kepler” docking (SM aft) – 10:45am EST
02/24/11 — STS-133/Discovery launch ULF5 (ELC4, PMM)
02/26/11 — STS-133/Discovery docking
03/05/11 — Soyuz TMA-01M/24S fly-around for historical/documentary ISS photography
03/05/11 — STS-133/Discovery undock
03/07/11 — STS-133/Discovery landing
03/07/11 — HTV2 relocation back to Node-2 nadir port
03/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-01M/24S undock/landing (End of Increment 26)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/28/11 — HTV2 unberth
03/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-03M/26S launch
04/01/11 — Soyuz TMA-03M/26S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
04/19/11 — STS-134/Endeavour launch ULF6 (ELC-3, AMS)
04/21/11 — STS-134/Endeavour docking (NET)
04/26/11 — Progress M-09M/41P undock
04/27/11 — Progress M-10M/42P launch
04/29/11 — Progress M-10M/42P docking (DC-1 nadir)
05/01/11 — STS-134/Endeavour undock
05/03/11 — STS-134/Endeavour landing
05/16/11 – Soyuz TMA-20/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/30/11 — Soyuz T MA-22/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/01/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/27S docking (MRM1)
————–Six-crew operations————-
06/04/11 — ATV-2 “Johannes Kepler” undock (SM aft) – under review
06/21/11 — Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 — Progress M-11M/43P docking (SM aft)
06/28/11 — STS-135/Atlantis ULF7 (MPLM)
08/29/11 — Progress M-11M/43P undocking
08/30/11 — Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 — Progress M-12M/44P docking (SM aft)
09/16/11 – Soyuz TMA-21/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-23/28S launch – D.Burbank (CDR-30)/A.Shkaplerov/A.Ivanishin
10/02/11 – Soyuz TMA-23/28S docking (MRM2)
————–Six-crew operations————-
10/25/11 — Progress M-10M/42P undocking
10/26/11 — Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/28/11 — Progress M-13M/45P docking (DC-1)
11/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-24/29S launch – O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit
12/02/11 — Soyuz TMA-24/29S docking (MRM1)
————–Six-crew operations—————-
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.
12/26/11 — Progress M-13M/45P undock
12/27/11 — Progress M-14M/46P launch
12/29/11 — Progress M-14M/46P docking (DC-1)
03/05/12 — Progress M-12M/44P undock
03/16/12 — Soyuz TMA-23/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/30/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Valkov
04/01/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S docking (MRM2)
————–Six-crew operations—————-
05/16/12 — Soyuz TMA-24/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/29/12 – Soyuz TMA-26/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
05/31/12 – Soyuz TMA-26/31S docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
09/18/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
————–Three-crew operations————-
10/02/12 — Soyuz TMA-27/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O. Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
10/04/12 – Soyuz TMA-27/32S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
11/16/12 — Soyuz TMA-26/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/30/12 — Soyuz TMA-28/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/02/12 – Soyuz TMA-28/33S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
03/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-27/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-29/34S launch.
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-29/34S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-

SpaceRef staff editor.