Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 22 October 2010

By SpaceRef Editor
October 22, 2010
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 22 October 2010

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

At wake-up, FE-2 Skripochka 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). [Oleg again inspects the filters before bedtime tonight, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

FE-3 Kelly began his first NUTRITION/Repository/Pro K generic blood collection, with FE-6 Walker assisting with the phlebotomy as operator and CDR Wheelock taking documentary photography. Scott then set up the RC (Refrigerated Centrifuge) for spinning the samples prior to stowing them in the MELFI (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS). [The operational products for Blood & Urine collections for the HRP (Human Research Program) payloads have been revised, based on crew feedback, new cold stowage hardware, and IPV capabilities. Generic blood & urine procedures have been created to allow an individual crewmember to select their payload complement and see specific requirements populated. Individual crewmembers will select their specific parameter in the procedures to reflect their science complement. Different crewmembers will have different required tubes and hardware configurations, so they should verify their choice selection before continuing with operations to ensure their specific instruction.]

Working in Node-3, Wheelock disconnected the LTL QD (Low Temperature Loop Quick Disconnect of the AR CDRA (Atmosphere Revitalization Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly).

In the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), Shannon Walker spent several; hours on the last segment of the current run of JAXA experiment HydroTropi (Hydrotropism & Auxin-Inducible Gene Expression in Roots Grown under Microgravity Conditions). [After having detached the 4 new MEUs B (Measurement Experiment Units B) from the CBEF IU 1G (Cell Biology Experiment Facility Incubator Unit for 1G), Shannon injected water in 2 HydroTropi chambers and saline (salt water) in the remaining 2 chambers. Two MEUs were then installed in the CBEF IU 1G, the other two in CBEF IU Micro-g. FE-6 next retrieved a KFT (Kennedy Fixation Tube) from MELFI 2 (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS 2) at +2 degC and conducted a leak check of the Glutaraldehyde Paraformaldehyde fixative KFT. Shannon detached 2 MEUs B (Measurement Experiment Units B) from the CBEF IU 1G, fixated the 4 samples and returned the KFT with the samples to MELFI for storage. Next, FE-6 removed the Toxic Hazard label from the pocket assembly on the 4 MEUs B, dismantled the equipment and restowed all parts and materials used for HydroTropi sample preparation and fixation. One of the major purposes of this experiment is to see if roots of cucumber seedlings will bend toward water when they grow in microgravity. Another purpose is to determine the mechanism by which roots bend. A root bends when its two sides grow differently, i.e., when the convex side grows faster than the concave side, the root bends as a result. A plant hormone called “auxin” plays a role in this mechanism. Auxin promotes or suppresses plant growth depending on its concentration in plants. If auxin has a greater effect on one side of a root, growth on this side is suppressed. Then, why does auxin work differently in the two sides of the root? Do some hidden substances control the action of auxin? It is another major purpose of the experiment to study the substances-the genes that control the action of auxin.]

Later, Walker closed helium valve #2 on the new VCAM (Vehicle Cabin Atmosphere Monitor), then shut the access door again and re-attached the acoustic blanket.

FE-6 also conducted the periodic camera setup status check on the running BCAT-5 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-5) with Sample 8, done one, three and five days after initializing.

The list of activities completed by CDR Doug Wheelock included –

* Performing his first onboard session with the MedOps experiment WinSCAT (Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool for Windows), logging in on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) laptop and going through the psychological evaluation exercise on the PC-based WinSCAT application [WinSCAT is a monthly time-constrained questionnaire test of cognitive abilities, routinely performed by astronauts aboard the ISS every 30 days before or after the PHS (periodic health status) test or on special CDR’s, crewmembers or flight surgeons request. The test uses cognitive subtests that measure sustained concentration, verbal working memory, attention, short-term memory, spatial processing, and math skills. The five cognitive subtests are Coding Memory – Learning, Continuous Processing Task (CPT), Match to Sample, Mathematics, and Coding Delayed Recall. These WinSCAT subtests are the same as those used during NASA’s long-duration bed rest studies],

* Supporting another test on the newly transferred & installed MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox), by visually inspecting & activating the MSG facility, with the video camera set up to allow ground monitoring, and later powering it down,

* Reconfiguring the manual valves of the gas trap of the JPM TCA L (Thermal Control Assembly for Low Temperature Loop) for operation, and then activating heater for the gas trap, followed later in the day by turning off the heater and setting the valves for the nominal (bypassed) configuration, and

* Terminating the bake-out regeneration of the latest EMU METOX (Metal Oxide) canister for CO2 absorption in the A/L (Airlock) and then initiating the process on another METOX can.

FE-5 Fyodor Yurchikhin spent several hours on preparing Progress M-05M/37P for its departure next Monday, 10/25 (~10:22am EDT). Specifically, the usual close-out steps included –

* Installing the docking mechanism (StM, Stykovochnovo mekhanizma) between the cargo ship and the DC1 nadir port (done yesterday) [the 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, MRM2 and DC1],

* Uninstalling & removing the LKT local temperature sensor commutator (TA251MB) of the BITS2-12 onboard measurement telemetry, along with its ROM unit (read-only memory, TA765B) for re-use,

* Activating the spacecraft’s electronics and taking out the ventilation/heating air duct;

* Closing the DC1/37P hatches on TsUP Go (~7:20am);

* Removing the QD (quick disconnect) screw clamps (BZV) of the docking & internal transfer mechanism (SSVP) which rigidized the joint [during clamp removal and leak checking, Russian thrusters were inhibited due to load constraints],

* Starting the standard one-hour leak checking of the SU docking vestibule and fuel/oxidizer transfer line interface between Progress and DC1, and

* Downlinking Fyodor’s formal report on loading completion and the video depicting the close-out activities, for review by ground specialists.

FE-2 Skripochka performed 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 and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.]

Oleg also completed the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance by 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).

FE-1 Kaleri conducted a photography session for the DZZ-13 “Seiner” ocean observation program, obtaining NIKON D3 photos with Nikkor 80-200 mm lens and the SONY HD video camcorder on oceanic water blooms in the central-eastern Atlantic areas, then copying the images to the RSK-1 laptop.

Alex also conducted the regular monthly maintenance of the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization). [This requires inspecting the condition of harnesses, belt slats, corner bracket ropes, IRBAs (Isolation Restorative Bungee Assemblies) and gyroscope wire ropes for any damage or defects, lubricating as required plus recording time & date values, and making sure that the display cable and skirt were properly secured afterwards.]

The newly arrived 24S crew, Kaleri, Kelly & Skripochka undertook the one-hour medical contingency OBT (Onboard Training) drill which provides crewmembers the opportunity to work as a team, practice communication and coordination necessary to perform medical emergency procedures (such as for nose bleed or eye injury), determine hardware deployment locations and practice CPR delivery in zero-G. [The recorded video with audio commentary is desired for ground training purposes.]

Alex, Oleg & Scott, again had an hour each set aside for crew onboard orientation. [During the first two weeks after their arrival, a new ISS crew will have 1 hour a day (or more if needed) to adjust to living in space.]

Scott undertook a session of the U.S. PFE (Periodic Fitness Evaluation) protocol as subject, a monthly 1.5-hr. procedure which checks up on BP & ECG during programmed exercise on the CEVIS cycle ergometer in the US Lab. Readings were taken with the BP/ECG (blood pressure/electrocardiograph) and the HRM (heart rate monitor) watch with its radio transmitter. CDR Wheelock assisted as Operator/CMO. [BP/ECG provides automated noninvasive systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements while also monitoring and displaying accurate heart rates on a continual basis at rest and during exercise.]

After CDR Wheelock had broken out and set up the gear, FE-6 Walker began her 4th Ambulatory Monitoring session of the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) experiment, assisted by Kelly as CMO (Crew Medical Officer) in preparing the Actiwatches, electrode sites, attaching the harness, donning the Cardiopres and taking documentary pictures. [ICV activities consist of two separate but related parts over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session. Today, wearing electrodes, the HM2 (Holter Monitor 2) for recording ECG (Electrocardiogram) for 48 hours, the ESA Cardiopres to continuously monitor blood pressure for 24 hours, and two Actiwatches (hip/waist & ankle) for monitoring activity levels over 48 hours, Shannon started the ambulatory monitoring part of the ICV assessment. During the first 24 hrs (while all devices are worn), ten minutes of quiet, resting breathing are timelined to collect data for a specific analysis. The nominal exercise, preferably on the CEVIS cycle ergometer, includes at least 10 minutes at a heart rate >=120 bpm (beats per minute). After 24 hrs, the Cardiopres is doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery are changed out to allow continuation of the session for another 24 hours. After data collection is complete, the Actiwatches and both HM2 HiFi CF Cards are downloaded to the HRF PC1, while Cardiopres data are downloaded to the EPM (European Physiology Module) Rack and transferred to the HRF PC1 via a USB key for downlink. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there will be fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months). The FD75 echo scan will include an exercise component with a second scan (subset of the first) completed within 5 minutes after the end of exercise. The primary objective of the accompanying CCISS (Cardiovascular Control on return from the ISS) experiment is to maximize the information about changes in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular function that might compromise the ability of astronauts to meet the challenge of return to an upright posture on Earth.]

Scott Kelly set up the equipment for his first 24-hr urine collections of the Generic HRF (Human Research Facility) urine sampling protocol, scheduled for tomorrow.

Shannon & Wheels filled out their weekly FFQs (Food Frequency Questionnaires) 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.]

Walker closed the protective shutters of the Lab, Node-3/Cupola & Kibo windows for the Progress 37P pre-undock propellant line purge at 3:05pm EDT.

At ~4:00am EDT, the entire crew held the regular (nominally weekly) tagup with the Russian Flight Control Team (GOGU/Glavnaya operativnaya gruppa upravleniya), including Shift Flight Director (SRP), at TsUP-Moscow via S-band/audio, phone-patched from Houston and Moscow.

At ~4:15am, Alex, Oleg & Fyodor linked up with TsUP/Moscow stowage specialists via S-band to conduct the weekly RS IMS tagup, discussing inventory & stowage issues, equipment locations and cargo transfers.

At ~4:45am, Alex & Oleg conducted a teleconference with ground specialists to discuss latest updates to the RODF (Russian Operations Data File) documents on Ascent, Descent & Off-Nominal Situations. [Corrections became necessary because of the SPS Signal Conversion System failure and off-nominal operation of the SPGS Gas-Mixture Supply System regulator. Real-time updates to RODF are made to support emergency or expedited descent as necessary.]

At ~12:15pm, Kaleri, Skripochka & Yurchikhin downlinked messages of greetings & congratulations for three Russian PAO TV events,- (1) the 50th birthday of Renat Alexeyevich Laishev, General Director of the Sambo-70 Education Center, (2) the celebratory event for the 70th Anniversary of the State system for elementary and secondary vocation education at the State Kremlin Palace, and (3) the 50th anniversary of NIIGraphit, the State Scientific and Research Institute for graphite (carbon)-based construction materials.

At ~3:30pm, the crew held their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-Houston.

At ~4:05pm, Doug Wheelock had his weekly PFC (Private Family Conference) via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop).

Wheels assembled & configured his Glenn harness with its transducer instrumentation for his exercise on the T2/COLBERT treadmill today, his 6th SDTO (Station Development Test Objective) session with the instrumented harness. [In order to maximize data acquisition, 8 transducers have been combined on the harness from both instrumentation kits and spares launched on Progress 38P. Doug has 3 exercise sessions on T2 between each data collection session, and there will be 4 collection sessions using each Harness (Glenn for T2, followed by the TVIS harness for TVIS).]

The crew worked out on today’s 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-3), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2, FE-5), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-1, FE-3, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR, FE-6) and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-2, FE-5). [T2 snubber arm inspection is no longer needed after every T2 session but must be done after the last T2 session of the day.]

Update on Sabatier Reactor: The Sabatier activation & checkout was completed successfully last night. The system ran for 5 hours, alternating between processing and standby as CO2 was available from CDRA (Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly). Following the 5-hr checkout, Sabatier operation continued as the OGA (Oxygen Generator Assembly) production rate was increased up to 100%, to evaluate pressure in the vent line that is shared between the Sabatier and OGA. Hamilton Standard has met their initial contractual obligation. This is a huge milestone for the ISS, and congratulations were uplinked to the crew for their great work and perseverance during the last couple weeks. Sabatier will not be run again until sometime after ULF-5 because it only works with the CDRA in Node 3 which will undergo IFM (Inflight Maintenance) during ULF-5. Activation of Sabatier after the IFM will largely depend on OGA which is currently under investigation because of some questions regarding water quality in the recirculation loop.

MT Translation: Ground controllers successfully translated the Mobile Transporter from WS6 (Worksite 6) to WS3 in preparation for the ULF5 mission. System performance was nominal. With this, all SSRMS, SPDM (Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator), and MT preparation tasks for the ULF5 mission are now complete.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Kerguelen Island, S. Indian Ocean (partly cloudy weather is forecast for this usually overcast site. Looking left of track for the island as ISS passed over the southern Indian Ocean. Requested were overlapping mapping frames of the entire island, especially of the glacial ice and snow on the west side), Perth, Australia (requested were overlapping mapping frames, taken left of track, of the southeastern urban-rural fringe of this metropolitan area. CEO staff is tracking land use and land cover change. This capital city of Western Australia is located along the Swan River well left of track on the coast), and Chiloe Island, southern Chile (HMS Beagle Site: Looking for this large, rugged and forested island as ISS approached the southern coast of Chile from the northwest. Trying for context views of the island as a whole. Darwin arrived at this island on June 12, 1834).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 9:18am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 353.2 km
Apogee height – 358.3 km
Perigee height – 348.2 km
Period — 91.60 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.65 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0007477
Solar Beta Angle — 40.5 deg (magnitude peaking)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 140 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 68,350.

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):

————–Six-crew operations————-
10/25/10 — Progress M-05M/37P undock (~10:22am EDT)
10/27/10 — Progress M-08M/40P launch
10/29/10 — Progress M-08M/40P docking
11/01/10 — STS-133/Discovery launch (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) ~4:40pm EDT
11/03/10 — STS-133/Discovery docking ~1:13pm EDT
11/07/10 — ————–Daylight Saving Time ends———–
11/10/10 — STS-133/Discovery undock ~5:40am EST
11/12/10 — STS-133/Discovery landing (KSC) ~10:39am EST
11/15/10 — Progress M-05M/37P deorbit
11/15/10 — Russian EVA-26
11/30/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
————–Three-crew operations————-
12/13/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/15/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/25S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
12/20/10 — Progress M-07M/39P undock
01/24/11 — Progress M-08M/40P undock
01/28/11 — Progress M-09M/41P launch
01/31/11 — Progress M-09M/41P docking
02/xx/11 — Russian EVA-28
02/15/11 — ATV-2 “Johannes Kepler” launch
02/27/11 — STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02)
03/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-01M/24S undock/landing (End of Increment 26)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/20/11 — Soyuz TMA-21/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R.Garan/A.Samokutayev
03/22/11 — Soyuz TMA-21/26S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
04/26/11 — Progress M-09M/41P undock
04/27/11 — Progress M-10M/42P launch
04/29/11 — Progress M-10M/42P docking
05/xx/11 — Russian EVA-29
05/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-20/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/01/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/27S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
06/21/11 — Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 — Progress M-11M/43P docking
08/29/11 — Progress M-11M/43P undocking
08/30/11 — Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 — Progress M-12M/44P docking
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
————–Six-crew operations————-
10/20/11 — Progress M-10M/42P undocking
10/21/11 — Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/23/11 — Progress M-13M/45P docking
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
————–Six-crew operations—————-
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.
12/26/11 — Progress M-13M/45P undock
03/14/12 — Soyuz TMA-23/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/26/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Valkov
03/28/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
05/15/12 — 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—————-
09/09/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/23/12 — Soyuz TMA-27/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O. Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
09/25/12 – Soyuz TMA-27/32S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
10/07/12 — Soyuz TMA-26/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-28/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
11/xx/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.