Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 19 December 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
December 19, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 19 December 2009

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Saturday – light-duty day for the Exp-22 crew

Flight Engineer Suraev began the day with the regular daily checkup of the aerosol filters at the Elektron O2 generator. [The filters were installed by him on 10/19 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). Photographs are to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

Commander Williams completed another Reaction Self Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS) protocol. [The RST is performed twice daily (after wakeup & before bedtime) for 3 days prior to the sleep shift, the day(s) of the sleep shift and 5 days following a sleep shift. A total of 121 RST runs are assigned to Jeff for the duration of his orbital stay.]

The two station residents performed the regular weekly three-hour task of thorough station cleaning, including COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) and Kibo. ["Uborka", usually done on Saturdays, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, damp cleaning of the SM (Service Module) dining table, other frequently touched surfaces and surfaces where trash is collected, as well as the sleep stations with a standard cleaning solution; also, fan screens and grilles are cleaned to avoid temperature rises. Special cleaning is also done every 90 days on the HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) bacteria filters in the Lab.]

As part of the house cleaning, Suraev conducted regular maintenance inspection & cleaning of fan screens in the FGB (TsV2), DC1 (V3), and also Group E fan grills in the SM (VPkhO, FS5, FS6, VP).

In the JAXA Kibo module, Williams supported the ongoing troubleshooting of the SLT2 (System Laptop Terminal 2) computer (after a first round on 7/1), by performing the second & third (of 5) file system check. [On 6/30, the SLT2 experienced a communications loss with the JCP (JEM Control Processor) and has not activated properly since then. SSIPC (Space Station Integration & Promotion Center)’s troubleshooting is being performed with a stand-alone SLT2 and consists essentially of checking/verifying correct activation of four different Operating Systems on the laptop (SLT, MKAM, BDAS & Windows XP.]

The CDR completed the daily status check of the APEX-Cambium hardware, looking for health and color of the plants. Because the Cambium plants were removed from the ABRS (Advanced Biological Research System) and thus ground-based monitoring, a daily status check & weekly photo session are necessary. [When completed, the APEX-Cambium payload in conjunction with the NASA-sponsored TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System) will determine the role of gravity in Cambium wood cell development (providing the pulp & paper and construction industries insight into the fundamental mechanisms of wood cell formation) and demonstrate non-destructive reporter gene technology & investigate spaceflight plant stress. APEX-Cambium provides NASA & the ISS community a permanent controlled environment capability to support growth of various organisms (i.e. whole plants).]

Williams also performed the regular bi-monthly reboots of the OCA Router and File Server SSC laptops, followed 10 min later by rebooting the two T61p OpsLAN Servers (one prime, one backup).

Maxim did the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM. [This includes 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].

Jeff filled out another weekly FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire) on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). [On the FFQs, NASA astronauts keep a personalized log of their nutritional intake over time on special MEC software. Recorded are the amounts consumed during the past week of such food items as beverages, cereals, grains, eggs, breads, snacks, sweets, fruit, beans, soup, vegetables, dairy, fish, meat, chicken, sauces & spreads, and vitamins. The FFQ is performed once a week to estimate nutrient intake from the previous week and to give recommendations to ground specialists that help maintain optimal crew health. Weekly estimation has been verified to be reliable enough that nutrients do not need to be tracked daily.]

At ~9:20am EST, the crew held their regular WPC (Weekly Planning Conference) with the ground, discussing next week’s "Look-Ahead Plan" (prepared jointly by MCC-Houston and TsUP-Moscow timeline planners) via S-band/audio, reviewing the monthly calendar, upcoming activities, and any concerns about future on-orbit events.

Jeff & Maxim performed their regular 2-hr physical exercise on the TVIS treadmill (FE), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR).

The CDR later transferred the exercise data files to the MEC for downlink, including the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on ARED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

Working off the Russian discretionary task list, FE Suraev spent his free time on –

  • Performing the regular status check of the running BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 ("Plants-2") experiment in the SM and recharging the water tank [Rasteniya-2 researches growth and development of plants under spaceflight conditions in the LADA-16 greenhouse from IBMP (Institute of Bio-Medical Problems, Russian: IMBP), currently planted with Mizuna seeds. Mizuna (Brassica rapa nipposinica) is a tasty variety of Japanese mustard greens, also known as California Peppergrass, eaten as a salad.],
  • Completing another 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 digital camera, and
  • Conducting a photography run of the GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with the NIKON D3X with SIGMA AF 300-800mm telelens of general views & panoramas of the Andes, particularly the Western slope in Chile, and Patagonian Glaciers.

2A Modal Analysis Update: During yesterday’s DTF (Dedicated Thruster Firing) test using the SM (Service Module) thrusters, dynamic data were taken with IWIS/EWIS (Internal Wireless Instrumentation System / External Wireless Instrumentation System), SAMS/MAMS (Space Acceleration Measurement System / Microgravity Acceleration Measurement System), and SDMS (Structural Dynamic Measurement System). Photogrammetry was not performed as originally planned since the longeron shadowing analysis was not complete. Photos were taken after the DTF. Background: As a result of the 2A BGA (Beta Gimbal Assembly) failing to unlatch during 19S undocking, the 2A photovoltaic array experienced several cycles of longeron shadowing that may have exceeded the buckling limits. The DTF was performed in order to check on this by characterizing the state of the P4-2A array structure.]

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Twenty-Two — Week 3)

3-D SPACE: No report.

AgCam (Agricultural Camera): No report.

ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS): Complete.


APEX (Advanced Plant Experiments on Orbit) -Cambium: “According to the photos, the plants appreciate the new conditions and produce new leaves and roots. This is very encouraging for the rest of the grow-out. Thanks Jeff for your great support.”

APEX-TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System): “TAGES 1B harvest completed on 12/15. All nominal. Video was greatly appreciated and will optimize future science return.”

BCAT-4/5 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test 4/5): No report.

BIOLAB (ESA): No report.

BIORHYTHMS (JAXA, Biological Rhythms): In the second measurement on 12/14, data were not saved properly, so this session was extended for another 24 hours by mutual consent. Data save completed on 12/15.

BISE (CSA, Bodies in the Space Environment): No report.

BISPHOSPHONATES: “Jeff, thanks for completing your pill ingestion. Your next session is scheduled for 12/20.”

CARD (Long Term Microgravity: Model for Investigating Mechanisms of Heart Disease, ESA): No report.

CARDIOCOG-2: Complete.

CB (JAXA Clean Bench): No report.

CBEF (JAXA Cell Biology Experiment Facility)/SPACE SEED: No report.

CCISS (Cardiovascular & Cerebrovascular Control on Return from ISS): No report.

CERISE (JAXA): Samples will return on the next shuttle.

CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment): Reserve.

CSI-3/CGBA-5 (CGBA Science Insert #2/Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 5): Ongoing.

CGBA-2 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 2): Complete.

CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack), MDCA/Flex: No report.

CSLM-2 (Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures 2): Complete.

Commercial Photo (JAXA): No report.
CW/CR (Cell Wall/Resist Wall) in EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System): Complete.

DECLIC (Device for the Study of Critical Liquids & Crystallization, CNES/NASA): No report.

DomeGene (JAXA): Complete.

DOSIS (ESA): Acquiring data. Assessment from all previous downlinks shows full nominal performance of the DOSTEL active detectors.

EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students): No report.

EDR (European Drawer Rack, ESA): The rack is continuously active in support of the Protein Crystallization Diagnostic Facility (PCDF) experiment. EDR is providing power/data and temperature control (via cooling loop) to PCDF.

ELITE-S2 (Elaboratore Immagini Televisive – Space 2): Planned.

ENose (Electronic Nose): No report.

EPM (European Physiology Module): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA): No report.

EPO LES-2 (ESA): No report.

EPO 3-min Video (JAXA): No report.

EPO J-Astro Report (JAXA): Ongoing.

EPO Dewey’s Forest (JAXA): No report.

EPO Space Clothes (JAXA): Complete.

EPO Hiten (Dance, JAXA): No report.

EPO Moon Score (JAXA): No report.

EPO Try Zero-G (JAXA): “No report.

EPO Kibo Kids Tour (JAXA): Complete.

EPO Spiral Top (JAXA): No report.

ETD (Eye Tracking Device): Completed.

FACET (JAXA): No report.

FIR/LMM/CVB (Fluids Integrated Rack / Light Microscopy Module / Constrained Vapor Bubble): No report.

FWED (Flywheel Exercise Device, ESA): No report.

FOAM STABILITY (ESA): Tapes were returned on ULF3.

FSL (Fluid Science Laboratory): No report.

GEOFLOW: No report.

HDTV System (JAXA): Was delivered by HTV1.

Holter ECG (JAXA): No report.

HQPC (JAXA): Was delivered by 34P.

HREP (HICO/Hyperspectral Imager for the Coastal Ocean & RAIDS/Remote Atmospheric & Ionospheric Detection System/JAXA): No report.


ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular): No report.

IMMUNO (Neuroendocrine & Immune Responses in Humans During & After Long Term Stay at ISS): Complete.


InSPACE-2 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 2): No report.

IRIS (Image Reversal in Space, CSA): No report.

LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System): No report.

Marangoni UVP (JAXA): Postponed. Troubleshooting planning is now in progress.

MAXI (Monitor of All-sky X-ray Image, JAXA): Continuing observation operation.

MEIS (Marangoni Experiment for ISS) in JAXA FPEF (Fluid Physics Experiment Facility): Postponed because of sample cassette failure.

MDCA/Flex: See under CIR.

Microbe-1 (JAXA): No report.

Micro-G Clay (JAXA EPO): Complete.

MMA (JAXA/Microgravity Measurement Apparatus): No report.

MISSE (Materials ISS Experiment): Ongoing.

MSG-SAME (Microgravity Science Glovebox): Complete.

MSL (Materials Science Laboratory): Processed SCAs from CETSOL and MICAST were returned on ULF3.

MTR-2 (Russian radiation measurements): Passive dosimeters measurements in DC-1 “Pirs”.

MULTIGEN-1: Completed.

NEUROSPAT (ESA/Study of Spatial Cognition, Novelty Processing and Sensorimotor Integration): No report.

NOA-1/-2 (Nitric Oxide Analyzer, ESA): Complete.


PADLES (JAXA, Area PADLES 3; Passive Area Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space): Dosimeter reattach is planned for 11/29.

PCDF-PU (Protein Crystallization Diagnostic Facility – Process Unit): No report.

PCG (JAXA, Protein Crystal Growth): No report.

PCRF (Protein Crystallization Research Facility) Reconfiguration (JAXA): Complete.

PMDIS (Perceptual Motor Deficits in Space): Complete.


RadGene & LOH (JAXA): Complete.

RadSilk (JAXA): Samples were returned to ground on ULF3.

RST/Reaction Self Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS): “Jeff, thank you for your continued participation in Reaction Self Test!”

SAIBO Rack (JAXA): On 12/2 the Kapton tape on the fire port was peeled off. A photo shoot was conducted on 12/10 for verification.

SAMS/MAMS (Space & Microgravity Acceleration Measurement Systems): (from CSA:) “The accelerometer supporting the MSG/SODI experiment is operating well and we are analyzing data from the second liquid cell. We have recently been able to produce the cumulative rms plots that give the science team insight into the impact of different events at various frequencies on the overall Grms magnitude. The analysis continues…”

SAMPLE: Complete.

SCOF (Solution Crystallization Observation Facility, JAXA): No report.

SEDA-AP (Space Environment Data Acquisition Equipment-Attached Payload, JAXA): Continuing observation operations.

SHERE (Shear History Extensional Rheology Experiment): Complete.

SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight): “Jeff, thanks for completing your third week of Sleep logging last week. We will be downlinking that data on 12/28.”

SLAMMD (Space Linear Acceleration Mass Measurement Device): No report.

SMILES (JAXA): Continuing observations.

SODI/IVIDIL (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument/Influence of Vibration on Diffusion in. Liquids, ESA): The Cell Array #2 has a binary mixture of 50% water – 50% isopropanol leading to positive Soret coefficient (when the lighter component is driven towards the higher temperature region of the experimental cell). Runs are continuing on the Cell Array#2 with varying frequency / amplitude vibration stimuli and varying imposed temperature gradients. Preliminary assessment of science images on-going. An anomaly on IVIDIL on 12/14 led to a delay in the start for week10. Upon the preliminary analysis of the results of Cell Array#2 runs, the science team requests some specific runs in order to be able to properly interpret the fluid behavior of the Cell Array#2 and look more in detail to the role of the applied temperature gradient in the cell.

SOLAR (Solar Monitoring Observatory): The Sun observation window #23 started on 12/15. An AIB (Analog Input Board) failure occurred on 12/16 and was recovered after one orbit. SOLSPEC and SOLACES are both currently acquiring science data.

SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity): Samples from Frank De Winne and Mike Barratt were returned on ULF3 (sessions were in Inc 19/20).

SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellite): No report.

SPICE (Smoke Point In Co-flow Experiment): No report.

SPINAL (Spinal Elongation): No report.

SWAB (Characterization of Microorganisms & Allergens in Spacecraft): No report.

THERMOLAB (ESA): No report.

TRAC (Test of Reaction & Adaptation Capabilities): Planned.


VO2max (NASA): Jeff’s next VO2max with Thermolab session will be planned in January.

VLE (Video Lessons ESA): VLE-1 completed.

WAICO #1/#2 (Waving and Coiling of Arabidopsis Roots at Different g-levels): No report.

YEAST B (ESA): No report.

CEO (Crew Earth Observations): Through 12/15, the ground has received a total of 6,141 frames of ISS-22 CEO imagery for review and cataloguing. “We are pleased to report your acquisition of imagery for the following CEO Target Requests: Castries, Santa Lucia – several good views – but we will continue to try for this target with less clouds in the view; Djibouti, Djibouti – two partial views – we will keep trying; Storm Bay, Tasmania – a thorough, detailed mapping of this target – we now only need a good context view; and Victoria, Seychelles – good views again, but clouds persist over the same parts of the city. This past weekend your excellent, Increment 21, view of Lake Ilopango, El Salvador was published on NASA/GSFC’s Earth Observatory website. This beautiful lake is located relatively young volcanic caldera just east of the capital city, San Salvador. Thanks for a fine example of a caldera-lake system in a tropical setting.”

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Sanaa, Yemen (weather was clear over the capital city of Yemen. One of the world’s oldest capital cities, Sanaa has been declared a World Heritage City by the United Nations. The city lies inland from the Red Sea coast and is surrounded by mountains. Overlapping mapping frames of the city were requested), Caracas, Venezuela (looking to the left of track for the capital city of Venezuela. The metropolitan area of Caracas is located close to the South American coastline [but separated from it by a mountain range], and approximately 83 km to the NE of Lake Valencia. Imagery of the Caracas metropolitan area and surrounding region was requested to help locate higher resolution imagery), and Iquique, Chile (HMS Beagle Site. This Chilean city was visited by Charles Darwin in 1835. The city is located west of the Atacama Desert and is an important shipping port. Looking slightly to the right of track and along the coastline for the city; there was likely some patchy cloud cover. Overlapping mapping frames of the urban area were requested).

Soyuz TMA-17/21S L-1 Preparations: At Baikonur/Kazakhstan, Soyuz 21S countdown continues on schedule for launch tomorrow to the ISS, scheduled for 4:52pm EST. [During loading, a shroud separation sensor was physically impacted and damaged, but it is redundant and its operation is not required for launch (its telemetry was disabled), according to TsUP-Moscow (Mark Bowman).]

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:22am EST [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 339.5 km
Apogee height – 344.8 km
Perigee height – 334.2 km
Period — 91.32 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0007898
Solar Beta Angle — -5.8 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.77
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 183 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 63,516

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
12/20/09 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S launch — O. Kotov (CDR-23)/S. Noguchi/T.J. Creamer – 4:52pm
12/22/09 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S docking at FGB nadir — 5:55pm (flight duration: 2d 1h 03min)
————–Five-crew operations————-
01/05/10 — PMA-3 relocation
01/12/10 — ESP-3 relocation
01/14/10 — Russian EVA-24
01/20/10 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S relocation (from SM aft to MRM-2)
02/03/10 — Progress M-04M/36P launch
02/05/10 — Progress M-04M/36P docking
02/07/10 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 “Tranquility”+Cupola (target date)
03/18/10 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S undock/landing
03/18/10 — STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC (~1:30pm EST)
04/02/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch – Skvortsov (CDR-24)/ Caldwell/Kornienko
04/27/10 — Progress M-03M/35P undock
04/28/10 — Progress M-05M/37P launch
04/30/10 — Progress M-05M/37P docking
05/14/10 — STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1 (~2:00pm EST)
05/15/10 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S undock/landing
05/29/10 — Progress M-04M/36P undock
05/30/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch – Wheelock (CDR-25)/Walker/Yurchikhin
06/xx/10 — Russian EVA-25
06/30/10 — Progress M-06M/38P launch
07/02/10 — Progress M-06M/38P docking
07/26/10 — Progress M-05M/37P undock
07/27/10 — Progress M-07M/39P launch
07/29/10 — Progress M-07M/39P docking
07/29/10 — STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02) (~7:30am EST)
08/30/10 — Progress M-06M/38P undock
08/31/10 — Progress M-08M/40P launch
09/02/10 — Progress M-08M/40P docking
09/15/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing
09/16/10 — STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) (~12:01pm EST)
09/18/10 — STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) docking
09/22/10 — STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) undock
09/30/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch – Kelly (CDR-26)/Kaleri/Skripochka
10/xx/10 — Russian EVA-26
10/26/10 — Progress M-07M/39P undock
10/27/10 — Progress M-09M/41P launch
10/29/10 — Progress M-09M/41P docking
11/15/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing
11/18/10 — ATV2 launch– Ariane 5 (ESA) U/R
11/30/10 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/15/10 — Progress M-08M/40P undock
12/17/10 — ATV2 docking
02/08/11 — Progress M-09M/41P undock
02/09/11 — Progress M-10M/42P launch
02/11/11 — Progress M-10M/42P docking
03/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch
xx/xx/11 – Progress M-11M/43P launch
05/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton

SpaceRef staff editor.