Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 2 March 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
March 3, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 2 March 2009

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 19 of Increment 18.

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 PZEh-MO-8/Body Mass Measurement, using the IM mass measurement device which Lonchakov then stowed away again. [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.]

The FE-1 terminated the bladder compression & leak checking of the Progress M-66/32P Rodnik BV1 & BV2 tanks. Later, as part of the SOZh (ECLSS) servicing, Yuri set up the liquid waste transfer equipment and pumped the contents of five EDV-U urine containers into the BV1 tank, then leaving the transfer gear in place.

In the SM (Service Module), Lonchakov also conducted a testing session on the network setup between the two “Zveno-B” (Link-B) modems behind panel 437 and the RSE2 A31p laptop, checking cable connections and tagging up with ground specialists via S-band. Screen-print images of the results were downlinked for ground review. [The modems link the RSE2 laptop computer to the SM REGUL comm system, enabling data to be uplinked/downlinked and commands to be uplinked directly. Regul provides for two-way voice communication, digital command/program information as well as telemetry transmission via RGS (Russian Groundsites). It also has the capability to receive and transmit range, radial velocity, and time-referenced information. It is the nominal uplink path for all Russian commands and is the only subsystem that operates using the Command Radio Link (KRL). Operating at a low data rate, it is equivalent to the U.S. S-band system. There is no Russian equivalent of the U.S. high data rate Ku-band system, based on the TDRS satellites.]

The CDR & FE-1 continued equipment preparations for the Russian Orlan EVA-21A, now scheduled on 3/10. The spacewalkers spent several hours checking out & readying the replaceable components (OTA) and auxiliary gear for their particular Orlan "skafandr" suits. [EV1 Fincke will wear Orlan #27 (red stripes) with BRTA-13 telemetry system, EV2 Lonchakov Orlan #26 (blue stripes) with BRTA-18. OTAs and auxiliary gear include portable primary & reserve O2 tanks (BK-3) in DC1 and SM PkhO (Service Module Transfer Compartment), storage batteries (825M3), LiOH canisters (LP-9), moisture collectors, liquid cooling garments (KVO), comm headsets (ShL-10), gloves (GP-10K), thermal comfort undergarments (BK-10), socks, diapers, filters for feedwater lines (FOR), Orlan CO2 measurement units (IK), degassing pump unit (BOS), etc. More Orlan prep activities are scheduled later this week, in particular Orlan and Orlan interface unit (BSS) liquid/gas separation (“degassing”) in PkhO & DC1, plus OTA installation on the Orlans.]

In the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), FE-2 Magnus worked on the FSL (Fluid Science Laboratory) system, repairing a MILBUS (1553B-A) connector (P3) that got damaged during Mission 1E. [As usual, the task required removal (and later reinstallation) of the ECP video bypass connector for opening the stowage container.]

Also in COL, the FE-2 serviced the ESA BLB (Biolab) facility, exchanging catalytic filters (which required tilting the rack & returning it to upright), supporting ground-commanded checking of the BGB (BioGlovebox) seals for containment, and inspecting the status of the BGB gloves. Magnus also activated the BGB air circulation, required for the BGB testing.

In the “Pirs” Docking Compartment, Yuri Lonchakov performed inspection & documentary photography on protective grilles of the module’s SD1-7 lighting fixtures (two stationary, one portable), replacing the grilles with spares if their mounting bolts could be loosened.

Sandra Magnus continued the sessions with CRE-1 (Component Repair Equipment 1) hardware, performing R&R (removal & replacement) of electronic components (R1, U2, U4) soldered on an integrated circuit board as time allowed, today Test Card 10, then stowing board, parts, tools & equipment. [Background & Objective: In an effort to minimize the logistical footprint required to support space exploration, NASA-wide studies are being conducted to determine practicality & feasibility of repairing failed hardware in space at the lowest possible hardware level. The current ISS electronics repair plan is to replace an entire ORU. However, ORU-level replacements will be logistically challenging for programs such as Constellation; thus, electrical repairs at a component level are seen as highly desirable. Electrical repair in microgravity using solder is the focus of this experiment. To help gather data needed to develop a capability of repairs with a smaller logistical footprint, this CRE-1 activity will use the materials in the CRE-1 Kit to attempt repairs to functional circuit cards, which will be returned to Ground for analysis. The procedure uses the US Soldering Iron Kit, ISS IVA Vacuum and the CRE-1 Kit contents (delivered on ULF2) to be set up on the MWA Work Surface Area, complete with the MWA Containment System. CRE-1 is SDTO (Station Development Test Objective) 17012-U.]

The FE-1 Lonchakov completed the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM, which today included urine transfer to Progress Rodnik tank BV1. [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.]

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-1/2.5h, FE-2), and ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2).

VolSci Preview: Two optional activities for the Voluntary Science program on days 3/7 & 3/8 were suggested to Mike & Sandy for their choice. Selection is required by tonight. [The choices are: (1) LOCAD-PTS (Lab-On-A-Chip Application Development – Portable Test System) Phase 1 surface sampling with media slide preparation using an LAL cartridge, two Glucan cartridges, and a Gram+ cartridge; and (2) EPO (Education Payload Operations) Renovation Demo, to create an educational video demonstration discussing the recent renovations that have occurred on the ISS and their preparations for six crewmembers.]

KURS Testing: Later today, TsUP-Moscow conducts closed-loop tests of the automated radio flight system KURS-P (on DC-1) and KURS-A (on Progress 32P), for one and two strings. Necessary pre-test activities included turning on SM KURS heaters, activating KURS antennas and frequency generator heaters, BITS2-12 onboard telemetry measurement system, US-22 matching unit and the CSB KURS Approach Test Program.

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, 8:11am EST [= epoch]):
Mean altitude — 355.3 km
Apogee height — 361.8 km
Perigee height — 348.8 km
Period — 91.65 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.000971
Solar Beta Angle — 17.0 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 62 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 58917

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
03/06/09 — Flight Readiness Review for STS-119/Discovery/15A launch
03/08/09 — US Daylight Time begins at 2:00am
03/10/09 — Russian EVA 21A (tentative; hatch open ~12:50pm EDT)
03/12/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment (tentative target date)
03/14/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking (tentative)
03/25/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking (tentative)
03/28/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A landing (tentative)
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.