Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 20 September 2008

By SpaceRef Editor
September 20, 2008
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 20 September 2008

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Saturday – light duty day for CDR Volkov, FE-1 Kononenko & FE-2 Chamitoff.

Post-Hurricane Ike Update: JSC/MCC-H operations have been handed back to Houston. JSC will open officially for business on 9/22 (Monday). Overnight uplink from BCC (Backup Control Center) at MSFC/Huntsville to the ISS crew: “By the time you read this, we should be well on our way back to Houston. Our stay in Huntsville has been amazing; the folks at the Huntsville Operations Support Center really know how to host a visiting Flight Control Team!”

CDR Volkov and FE-1 Kononenko again had several hours set aside for Progress unloading, transferring and stowing Russian & US cargo aboard the station, while tracking moves & locations in the IMS (Inventory Management System) database with BCRs (Bar Code Readers).

Volkov also performed the routine task of taking two photos of the internal part of the SM (Service Module) aft port’s SSVP-StM docking cone, used for the 30P linkup on 9/17 and earlier for the docking of ATV1 “Jules Verne”. These images are used to refine current understanding of docking conditions. The pictures were then transferred to OCA for subsequent downlinking. [The objective is to take photo imagery of the scratch or scuff mark left by the head of the active docking probe on the internal surface of the passive drogue (docking cone) ring, now rotated out of the passageway. As other crewmembers before him, the CDR used the Nikon D1X digital still camera to take two pictures each with the hatch closed down.]

Kononenko initiated another recharge cycle on the batteries for the SONY HVR-Z1J digital high-definition camcorder used for onboard video tapings.

For his Voluntary Weekend Science (VolSci) program today, FE-2 Chamitoff conducted his second session with the LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System) payload, first connecting (later disconnecting) the Reader unit to a UOP (Utility Outlet Panel), then sampling/swabbing surface sites in Node-1 for yeast & molds, using Glucan LAL cartridges and a Negative Control sample of clean water. [LOCAD uses small, thumb-sized “microfluidic” cartridges that are read by the experiment reader. The cartridges contain dried extract of horseshoe crab blood cells (LAL/Limulus amebocyte lysate) and colorless dye. LAL tests are used for the detection and quantification of bacterial endotoxins: in the presence of the bacteria, the dried extract reacts strongly to turn the dye a green color. Therefore, the more green dye, the more microorganisms there are in the original sample. Glucans are complex carbohydrate (sugar, D-glucose) macromolecules. The handheld device tests this new analysis technology by sampling for the presence of gram negative bacteria in the sample in about 15 minutes, showing the results on a display screen. Background: 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, began by Sunita Williams in March/April last year, this compact technology has broad potential applications in space exploration–from monitoring environmental conditions to monitoring crew health. The current study should prepare for long-duration exploration by demonstrating a system that enables the crew to perform biochemical analysis in space without having to return samples to Earth.]

Oleg Kononenko unloaded new RODF (Russian Operations Data File) material from Progress 30P and replaced/updated respective procedures sheets in seven RODF books (Technical Experiments, Medical Experiments, Long-Duration Missions, SM IFM IVA, DC-1 IFM IVA, FGB IFM IVA, Progress M-65 Transfer Ops) plus the BIO4 DVD disk.

A new item added to Greg Chamitoff’s discretionary “job jar” task list is to look for and locate a number of GRAs (Glove Ring Assemblies) for the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox). [13 older GRAs are to return to Earth on ULF-2, while 13 GRAs of newer design are to remain onboard for the ULF-2 stage.]

In the SM, the CDR completed the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS), today as a discretionary job from the “time permitting” task list. [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 FE-1 performed the daily IMS maintenance, updating/editing its standard “delta file” including stowage locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

WRM Update: An updated WRM (Water Recovery Management) “cue card” was uplinked overnight for the crew’s reference, updated with the latest water audit. [The new card (17-1016) lists 29 CWCs (~1047.4 L total) for the four types of water identified on board: technical water (326.2 L, for flushing only because of Wautersia bacteria), potable water (669.8 L, incl. 174.6 L currently on hold), condensate water (34.4 L), waste/EMU dump and other (17 L). Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

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

Later, Oleg transferred the exercise data files to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) laptop for downlink, including the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

At ~11:15am EDT, the crew downlinked a PAO TV address of greetings to the participants of the International Conference "Life Support Systems as Means of Human Exploration of Deep Space", to take place in Moscow next week (9/24-27), dedicated to the 45th Anniversary of the State Scientific Center of Russian Federation -IMBP (Institute of Medical and Biological Problems) of the Russian Academy of Science, and it is carried out under the aegis of the Russian Academy of Science, Russian Space Agency, Federal Medical and Biological Agency of Russia, IMBP, RSC-Energia and Khrunichev State Space Scientific and Industrial Center. [“…As it goes in a song – “The environment at home is topmost…”. The ISS is currently our home, our street, our stadium, our work. It is the functioning of the life support system (SOZh) that our well-being, our mood and finally the successful implementation of the mission program depend on. The life support systems that combine the physico-chemical and biological processes of the cycle of matter become even more crucial in course of interplanetary expeditions. We are confident that the research results provided in presentations of the eminent scientists and experts in the field of the life support systems development as well as discussions concerning various directions of these systems creation will serve as a powerful incentive for the development of new perspective means to support long-lasting human life and work in deep space. We wish you successful work.”]

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Seventeen — Week 22)

3-D SPACE: In progress.

ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS): Measurements continue in FGB module.

ANITA (Analyzing Interferometer for Ambient Air): Continuing.

BCAT-3 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test 3): Reserve.

CARDIOCOG-2: Completed.

CCISS (Cardiovascular & Cerebrovascular Control on Return from ISS): Reserve.

CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment): Reserve.

CW/CR (Cell Wall/Resist Wall) in EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System): Samples returned on 1J.

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

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

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

EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students): Complete.

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

EPO (Educational Payload Operations): Reserve.

ETD (Eye Tracking Device): Completed.

EuTEF (European Technology Exposure Facility): Due to safety concerns identified for the PLEGPAY instrument (when operated in Plasma Discharge mode), the entire EuTEF platform was put in survival mode on 9/1 at around 11:00am EDT (just prior to 29P undocking). Since then, the EuTEF power feeder#1 has been de-activated and no science acquisition is possible. Request has been approved for intermittent activation for 3 of the 9 EUTEF payloads (EXPOSE, MEDET, DOSTEL) while working on ensuring permanent re-activation as soon as possible.

FSL (Fluid Science Laboratory): FSL is nominal.

GEOFLOW: The GEOFLOW EC (Experiment Container) has been removed on 9/16 in view of the 30P docking.

HDTV System Test DL (JAXA): In progress.

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): In progress.

Integrated Immune: In progress.

KUBIK-FM1/ KUBIK-FM2 Centrifuge/Incubators: Completed.

LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System): Planned.

Marangoni Experiment for ISS (JAXA Fluid Physics Experiment Facility): Parts of the third run have been deferred to later because of control transfer to the BCC.

Micro-G Clay (JAXA EPO): Complete.

MISSE (Materials ISS Experiment): Ongoing.

Moon Photography from ISS (JAXA EPO): Complete.

MTR-2 (Russian radiation measurements): Passive dosimeters measurements in DC1 “Pirs”.

MULTIGEN-1: Completed.

MSG-SAME (Microgravity Science Glovebox): Complete.

NOA-1/-2 (Nitric Oxide Analyzer, ESA): Next NOA-1 session currently planned on 9/30.


PADLES (Passive Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space): In progress.

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

PMDIS (Perceptual Motor Deficits in Space): Complete.

SAMS/MAMS (Space & Microgravity Acceleration Measurement Systems): Ongoing.

SAMPLE: Complete.

SHERE (Shear History Extensional Rheology Experiment): In progress.

SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight): In progress.

SOLAR (Solar Monitoring Observatory): The Sun observation window closed on 9/7. In view of Hurricane Ike and transition to BAT/BCC, SOLAR has been required to go to feeder#2 only. Instruments were therefore switched off on 9/11. Upon 30P docking on 9/17, SOLAR and its instruments were powered back on, awaiting the next sun visibility window expected to open as of 9/26.

SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity): PCBA (Portable Clinical Blood Analyzer) pouches with control solution and cartridges have been transferred to MELFI and all SOLO kits have been transferred from Progress to the ETC (European Transport Carrier) in COL on 9/18. First SOLO session currently planned to start on 10/5. [Note: The ETC carries payload items that cannot be launched within the ESA facilities because of stowage or transport limitations. In orbit it serves as a workbench and stowage facility to support experiments with Biolab, the Fluid Science Lab, the European Physiology Modules and the European Drawer Rack.]

SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellite): Reserve.

Swab (Characterization of Microorganisms & Allergens in Spacecraft): Complete.

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


WAICO #1 (Waving and Coiling of Arabidopsis Roots at Different g-levels): Teams on ground continue to assess the results of the BIOLAB Rotor A Bellow Test, which gave faulty signals for 4 out of 6 Reference ECs. Rotor B Actuator test and Rotor B bellow test have been successfully performed on 9/5.

CEO (Crew Earth Observations): Ongoing.

No CEO (Crew Earth Observations) photo targets uplinked for today.

CEO photography can be studied at this “Gateway” website: (as of 3/1/08, this database contained 757,605 views of the Earth from space, with 314,000 from the ISS alone).

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible.):
09/29/08 — ATV de-orbit (nighttime re-entry for observation from 2 NASA planes; 9:12pm)
10/01/08 — NASA 50 Years (official)
10/02/08 – ISS Reboost (~1.8 m/s)
10/10/08 — STS-125/Atlantis Hubble Space Telescope Service Mission 4 (SM4) 12:33am
10/11/08 — Progress M-65/30P undocking (from SM aft)
10/12/08 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S launch (~3:03am EDT; Lonchakov, Fincke, Garriott)
10/14/08 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S docking (FGB nadir port, ~4:51am)
10/24/08 — Soyuz TMA-12/16S undocking (DC1 nadir) & landing
11/12/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 launch – MPLM Leonardo, LMC
11/14/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 docking
11/20/08 — ISS 10 Years
11/25/08 — Progress M-65/30P undocking & deorbit
11/26/08 — Progress M-66/31P launch
11/30/08 — Progress M-66/31P docking
02/09/09 — Progress M-66/31P undocking & deorbit
02/10/09 — Progress M-67/32P launch
02/12/09 — Progress M-67/32P docking
02/12/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment
02/14/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking
02/24/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking
02/26/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A landing (nominal)
03/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S launch
03/27/09 – Soyuz TMA-14/18S docking (DC1)
04/05/09 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S undocking
04/07/09 — Progress M-67/32P undocking & deorbit
05/15/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD
05/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S launch
05/27/09 — Six-person crew on ISS (following Soyuz 19S docking)
07/30/09 — STS-128/Atlantis/17A – MPLM(P), last crew rotation
10/15/09 — STS-129/Discovery/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/10/09 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
02/11/10 — STS-131/Atlantis/19A – MPLM(P)
04/08/10 — STS-132/Discovery/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM1
05/31/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC3, ELC4 (contingency).

SpaceRef staff editor.