Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 23 July 2010

By SpaceRef Editor
July 24, 2010
Filed under , , ,
NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 23 July 2010

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

Upon wake-up, CDR Skvortsov performed 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). [The CDR will inspect the filters again before bedtime, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

Also at wake-up, FE-4 Wheelock & FE-6 Walker completed another run of the 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. The experiment consists of a 5-minute reaction time task that allows crewmembers to monitor the daily effects of fatigue on performance while on ISS. The experiment provides objective feedback on neurobehavioral changes in attention, psychomotor speed, state stability, and impulsivity while on ISS missions, particularly as they relate to changes in circadian rhythms, sleep restrictions, and extended work shifts.]

Skvortsov performed another sun-glint observation session with the Russian DZZ-12 RUSALKA (“Mermaid”) experiment from SM window #9, using the hand-held spectrometer (without use of the TIUS three-stage rate sensor), synchronized with a coaxially mounted NIKON D2X camera for taking snapshots, and later downloading the data to laptop RSE1 for subsequent downlink via OCA. Video footage was also taken, using the SONY HVR-Z7E camcorder in auto mode. [RUSALKA is a micro spectrometer for collecting detailed information on observed spectral radiance in the near IR (Infrared) waveband for measurement of greenhouse gas concentrations in the Earth atmosphere.]

In COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), FE-2 Caldwell-Dyson adjusted the VCA-1 (Video Camera Assembly 1) for covering her activities, then worked several hours on the Genara A (Gravity Regulated Genes in Arabidopsis A) experiment, finishing the experiment. Since the experiment is a collaboration between ESA and NASA, the responsibilities and support are divided. [After reviewing crew procedures for two activities, Tracy set up the MWA (Maintenance Work area) for post-experiment processing, stopped the Genara A run in the EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System) facility, removed the EMCS ECs (Experiment Containers) in preparation of Genara CC (Culture Chamber) processing on the MWA, disassembled ECs and removed Genara A CCs containing plant samples. Afterwards, Tracy inserted the removed 16 CCs into MELFI. Two RefECs (Reference ECs) were installed on Rotor A and two more on Rotor B. Finally, the MWA and H-Strap were deconfigured. Background: Genara-A, a collaborative effort between COL-CC (Columbus Control Center / Oberpfaffenhofen) and POIC (Payload Operations Integration Center/Huntsville), seeks to provide an understanding of microgravity-induced altered molecular activities which will help to find plant systems that compensate the negative impact on plant growth in space, an aspect of special importance for the application of plant based systems in life support systems or as food source for long-duration space flights beyond low Earth orbit. Genara-A addresses the existence of gravity regulated genes, which affect the mechanism of gravisensing and the redistribution of plant growth hormones. For this purpose the growth of Arabidopsis will be followed by optical observation of 1g reference samples and samples grown under microgravity. In transgenic Arabidopsis plants, several biomonitors will report the distribution of IAA (Indole-3-Acetic Acid, a plant hormone auxin) and ABA (Abscisic Acid, a plant hormone) at the tissue level in microgravity or in the 1-g centrifuge. Arabidopsis thaliana (thale cress), is one of the model organisms used for studying plant biology and the first plant to have its entire genome sequenced. Changes in thale cress are easily observed, making it a very useful model.]

Later, Doug manually closed the EMCS gas valves (done within 24 hrs following EMCS facility powerdown if the latter was performed via ground commanding).

Also in the COL, monitored by the VCA-1, Wheelock performed the periodic inspection & cleaning of the RGSH (Return Grid Sensor Housing) in the port cone/deckside location, using the vacuum cleaner after opening the RGSH to access its internal sensors and brackets.

After yesterday’s completion of all Orlan-MK suit preparations, EVA-25 Dry-run activities began today at ~4:45am EDT with FE-3 Kornienko tearing down and removing the air ducts between the SM PkhO (Service Module Transfer Compartment) and DC1 Docking Compartment/airlock, including their V3 ventilation fan, to make room for the subsequent suited exercise.

At the same time, FE-4 Yurchikhin worked on configuring the STTS communications systems in the DC1 for the exercise. [The suited run requires wireless Tranzit-B suit radio telemetry on both semi-sets (activated: ~4:50am) and temporary deactivation of the Russian VHF channel 1 (Very High Frequency, Russian: UKV1, for ultra-shortwave) to avoid interference from extraneous radio stations to the Orlans while over Russian ground stations (RGS, DO 3). All EVA preps were monitored by the ground via audio. Tranzit-B TM was turned off after the checkout.]

After another functionality & leak check of the Orlan-MK suits, their equipment and their BSS interface units in the DC1 & PkhO, the crewmembers began donning EVA gear at ~5:35am, i.e., putting on personal gear bags, biomed harness, thermal underwear, LCG (liquid cooling garment), low-noise headset, gloves, etc.

After more checkouts of comm hookups & biomedical parameter telemetry via the BSS Orlan interface system for vital signs & equipment monitoring, suiting up then culminated in ingress in the Orlans (~6:35am) through their “backdoors” and sealing off of the backpacks.

Next in line were –

  • More functionality checkouts of the suits and their BSS controls (e.g., temperature control handling, water cooling system ops, preliminary Orlan & BSS leak checks),
  • Preliminary dimensional suit fit checks at reduced suit pressure of 0.4 atm (5.9 psi), and
  • About an hour of testing/training of suited mobility & translation inside the DC1, beginning at ~7:15am.

[These “intramural” exercises included translation to all DC1 work stations with mated fluid umbilical, assessment of how the interior DC1 config impacts operations with various gear & accessories such as the POV (EVA support panel) and BSS, moving the BRT (Body Restraint Tether) with a CLB (Crew Lock Bag) and securing the BRT on a handrail, retrieving the Kodak 760 camera from the KPU tool carrier and stowing it temporarily on the OTA swing arm, etc.]

Mikhail & Fyodor’s egress from their Orlan-MKs was at about 9:00am, followed by restoration of
communication settings in the DC1 to nominal ops and post-training close-out activities, including air duct assembly.

Working in the Lab WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment), CDR Skvortsov removed the wring collector (COT) and replaced it with a new spare which FE-6 Walker retrieved from stowage in the JAXA JLP (JEM Logistics Pressurized Segment).

Other activities completed by Alexander included –

  • Doing the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) 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),
  • Conducting 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],
  • Tightening the BZV quick release screw clamps on the MRM1 Rassvet side,
  • Installing a rigid air duct in the hatch between the MRM1 & FGB, and
  • Cleaning the VD1 & VD2 air ducts in the MRM2 Poisk module.

Tracy, Shannon & Wheels got together for a joint 2.5-hr review of the upcoming US EVA-15 on 8/5, followed by a teleconference on spacewalk details with ground specialists via S- and Ku-band at ~1:40pm.

Working briefly on the TOCA (Total Organic Carbon Analyzer) in Node-3, Doug performed the periodic check and calibration run on the system. Shannon later transferred the analysis data to laptop for downlink.

Wheels also filled out his 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.]

Servicing the new NASA CubeLab-1 hardware which she had installed on 7/12, Shannon Walker downloaded data in the form of four text files from a port of the equipment. [CubeLab is a low-cost 1-kg platform for educational projects. It is a multipurpose research facility that interfaces small standard modules into the ERs (EXPRESS Racks). The modules can be used within the pressurized space station environment in orbit, with a nominal length, width, and height of 100 mm and a mass of no more than 1 g. Up to 16 CubeLab modules can be inserted into a CubeLab insert inside an ER.]

Later, FE-6 checked designations on the three PADLES (Passive Area Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space) radiation dosimeters in the Kibo laboratory (JPM/JEM Pressurized Module) and took documentary photography.

At ~3:55am EDT, the 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 via S-band/audio, phone-patched from Houston and Moscow.

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

At ~10:55am, Tracy had her regular IMS stowage conference with ground specialists at MCC-Houston.

At ~3:10pm, the crew is scheduled for their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-H.

The crew worked out on today’s 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-2), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (CDR, FE-3), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-2, FE-4, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-2, FE-6) and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (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.]

For her exercise session on the T2 treadmill, Shannon donned the Glenn treadmill harness with installed transducer instrumentation, then activated the harness for her second session of the SDTO (Station Development Test Objective). [Afterwards, FE-6 downloaded the harness data (including achieved “body weight”) and filled out a survey questionnaire to complete the SDTO (Station Development Test Objective).]

OGS Update: OGS (Oxygen Generation System) has been successfully activated and is producing O2 at 100%.

Conjunction Update: The conjunction with Object 29729 (debris of Chinese satellite FENGYUN 1C) has dropped to a very low PoC (Probability of Collision). Planning for a DAM (Debris Avoidance Maneuver) has been cancelled.

EVA-25 Overview:

  • EV1 – Fyodor Yurchikhin, Orlan-MK#4
  • EV2 – Mikhail Kornienko, Orlan-MK#6
  • Wakeup: 7/26 – 2:40pm EDT (sleep shifted 12h40m)
  • DC1 Hatch Open: 7/26 – 11:45pm EDT
  • Repress: 7/27 – 5:45am EDT
  • Sleep: 7/27 – 11:00am EDT
  • EVA Objectives (6 hrs.)
  • SM ATV docking camera R&R
  • MRM1 C&DH, Kurs-P external cable routing
  • Jettison old SM ATV docking camera and empty cable reels
  • DC1 Prime A/L (SM PkhO Backup A/L)
  • IV Crew:
  • 22S crew (Skvortsov & Caldwell Dyson) isolated in MRM2 (Soyuz 22S on MRM2).
  • 23S crew in USOS (Soyuz 23S on MRM1).

CEO photo targets uplinked for today were Nicosia, Cyprus (ISS tracked northeastward over the eastern Mediterranean in mid-morning with fair skies below. This city of about 400,000 is located in the north central part of the island. As the crew approached the coast of southern Turkey, they were to aim their camera just right of track), Tokyo, Japan (this capital is also a megacity that now has an estimated population exceeding 13 million. It is located on the south coast of the main Japanese island of Honshu. This near-nadir pass approached from the northwest in late-afternoon light with fair weather expected. Short-lens context views only of this sprawling urban area were requested at this time), Tirana, Albania (the Albanian capital, with a population of over 600,000, is located near the center of the country and about 20 miles inland from the Adriatic Sea. Looking just right of track as ISS passed northeastward over the coast at mid-morning in fair weather), Lisbon, Portugal (the crew had a fine, mid-morning pass in fair weather over the Portuguese capital with its metropolitan population of nearly 3 million. As it approached the coast of the Iberian Peninsula from the southwest, they were to look near nadir for this port city located on the broad estuary of the Tagus River), Mississippi Delta Region (ISS had a mid-morning pass over the center of this target area. As it approached the southeast Louisiana coast from the southwest with partly cloudy weather, the crew was to look right of track for the Mississippi Delta and the Gulf waters beyond. They acquired some good imagery of this area on 7/10 with the 180mm lens. Today they were to obtain detailed overlapping, mapping frames of the coastline and offshore waters to detect the impact on coastal wetlands from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster. The presence of slight sun glint in the area at this time of the day may have enhanced the visibility of the surface oil sheen), and Rome, Italy (the Italian capital, a.k.a. “The Eternal City” is located just inland from the nation’s central west coast. ISS had a nadir pass in mid-afternoon light with fair weather expected. As it tracked southeastward along the coast the crew should have spotted this sprawling city of 3.7 million. Trying for contextual mapping views of the urban area of this great city).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:48am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 355.2 km
Apogee height – 360.8 km
Perigee height – 349.6 km
Period — 91.64 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0008329
Solar Beta Angle — -30.4 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 43 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 66,918.

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
————–Six-crew operations—————–
07/26/10 — Russian EVA-25 (Yurchikhin/Kornienko) – MRM1 outfitting (~11:45pm-5:45am)
08/05/10 — US EVA-15 (Caldwell/Wheelock)
09/07/10 — Progress M-06M/38P undock
09/08/10 — Progress M-07M/39P launch
09/10/10 — Progress M-07M/39P docking
09/24/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing (End of Increment 24)
————–Three-crew operations————-
10/08/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch – Kelly (CDR-26)/Kaleri/Skripochka
10/10/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
10/26/10 — Progress M-05M/37P undock
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) ~4:33pm EDT“target”
11/10/10 — Russian EVA-26
11/17/10 — Russian EVA-27
11/26/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
————–Three-crew operations————-
12/10/10 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/12/10 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
12/15/10 — Progress M-07M/39P undock
12/xx/10 — Russian EVA-28
12/26/10 — Progress M-08M/40P undock
12/27/10 — Progress M-09M/41P launch
12/29/10 — Progress M-09M/41P docking
02/02/11 — STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02) ~4:19pm EDT“target”
03/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S undock/landing (End of Increment 26)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R, Garan/A.Samokutayev
04/01/11 — Soyuz TMA-22/26S 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
05/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/31/11 — Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/01/11 — Soyuz TMA-23/27S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
06/21/11 — Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 — Progress M-11M/43P docking
08/30/11 — Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 — Progress M-12M/44P docking
09/16/11 – Soyuz TMA-22/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-24/28S launch
10/02/11 – Soyuz TMA-24/28S 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-23/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-25/29S launch
12/02/11 — Soyuz TMA-25/29S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.
12/26/11 — Progress M-13M/45P undock.

SpaceRef staff editor.