Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 26 February 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
February 26, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 26 February 2009

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

CDR Fincke & FE-1 Lonchakov conducted a session with the HMS (Health Maintenance System) biomedical BRASLET-M/Anketa ("bracelet/questionnaire") test procedure with ultrasound and echocardiographic electrodes, documented with still & video imagery. Mike was the operator, Yuri the subject. Afterwards, the equipment was stowed away. [Prior to the session, the protocol had called for no BRASLET cuff within 24 hrs, no caffeine within 12 hrs, no heavy meals within 4 hrs, no food or exercise at all within 2 hrs, and no liquids within 30 min. Background: BRASLET (Validation of On-Orbit Methodology for the Assessment of Cardiac Function and Changes in the Circulating Volume Using Ultrasound and BRASLET-M Occlusion Cuffs) is SDTO 17011, sponsored by NASA and FSA/IBMP (Russian Federal Space Agency/Institute of Bio-Medical Problems, Russian: IMBP, Dr. Valery Bogomolov). BRASLET is testing the performance of occlusion cuffs in modifying fluid shifts that occur early during physiological transition into the space environment. Understanding the effects of this countermeasure on cardiovascular function will be useful for both medical operations and future research. The goal of this investigation is to establish a valid ultrasound methodology for assessing a number of aspects of central and peripheral hemodynamics and cardiovascular function, specifically in rapid changes in intravascular circulating volume. The SDTO uses BRASLET-M occlusion cuffs, which are a Russian-made operational countermeasure already pre-calibrated and available onboard for each ISS crewmember. BRASLET uses multiple modes of ultrasound imaging and measurements, in combination with short-term application of BRASLET-M occlusive cuffs and cardiopulmonary maneuvers (Valsalva, Mueller) to demonstrate and to evaluate the degree of changes in the circulating volume on orbit. This will be accomplished by performing echocardiographic examinations in multiple modes (including Tissue Doppler mode), ultrasound measurements of lower extremity venous and arterial vascular responses to BRASLET-M device under nominal conditions and also during cardiopulmonary Mueller and Valsalva maneuvers. Identical measurements are being repeated without BRASLET-M, with BRASLET-M applied, and immediately after releasing the occlusion device.]

FE-1 Lonchakov performed the periodic health check on the main and backup circulation pumps of the spare Elektron BZh Liquid Unit 056, using an EDV container, the BPA-1 Nitrogen Purging Unit and the BID Pressure Control Unit for the pressurization tests. Work to be continued tomorrow. [The spare BZh has been in stowage since March 2007.]

Performing regular service on the MATRYOSHKA-R (RBO-3-2) radiation instrumentation in the SM (panel 326), Yuri Lonchakov conducted a health check on the ASTR Spectrometer and downlinked accumulated data from the new ALC-961 PCMCIA (Portable Computer Memory Card International Adapter) memory card via the RSK1 laptop, replacing it in the AST. The Spectrometer was then activated, after a functional check. [RBO-3-2 is using the ESA/RSC-Energia experiment ALTCRISS (ALC/Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS) with its Spectrometer (AST) and ALC equipment, which is periodically moved around and now located again in the SM.]

CDR Fincke set up the SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight) Actiwatch Reader and downloaded accumulated data from his and Sandy’s Actiwatches to the HRF-1 (Human Research Facility 1) laptop. Later, after Mike initialized the Actiwatches, they were donned by the FE-2 & CDR who then decabled & stowed the Reader. [To monitor the crewmember’s sleep/wake patterns and light exposure, Greg wears a special Actiwatch device which measures the light levels encountered by him as well as his patterns of sleep and activity throughout the Expedition and uses the payload software for data logging and filling in questionnaire entries in the experiment’s laptop session file on the HRF-1 laptop. The log entries are done within 15 minutes of final awakening for seven consecutive days, as part of the crew’s discretionary “job jar” task list. This is Week 3 of 3 for the FE-2.]

Sandra Magnus disassembled and stowed SVG (Space Video Gateway) hardware, removing these items from the LAB1D3 location to make room for setting up the optical Agcam payload. [The disassembled equipment included the ISL (Integrated Station OpsLAN) Ethernet cable, Orb DC power cable and Sony 750 power/video cable from the SVG.]

Michael Fincke performed the regular monthly inspection & maintenance of the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization), 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 checking the belt tension and recording time & date values.

The CDR continued the sessions with CRE-1 (Component Repair Equipment 1) hardware, performing R&R of a component (U4) on an integrated circuit board and also attempting removal of Fine Pitch components U6 & U7. [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.]

On the FCF (Fluids & Combustion Facility) in the CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack), the CDR re-installed alignment guides after PaRIS (Passive Rack Isolation System) activation.

In the US Airlock (A/L), the FE-2 performed regular midterm checkout & maintenance on EMU (Extravehicular Mobility Unit) 3004, dumping its water tanks for 3 minutes then refilling them, and also including verification that SCOFs (Secondary Oxygen Package Checkout Fixture) are reseated and the O2 regulator function is configured in the “Press” position.

Afterwards, Magnus changed out the biocide filter (#1007) of the A/L UIA (Umbilical Interface Assembly), replacing it with a spare filter (#1010). [Waste water filter will be swapped at a later date.]

After installing new Progress 32P-delivered KURS-P (K2-BKA0-01) equipment in the SM (Service Module) yesterday, Lonchakov today re-installed the older KURS equipment in the FGB. [Prior to 31P docking, the FGB KURS unit was moved and installed into the SM after the unit there was found to be failed. This week’s activities ensured that the newest KURS unit is installed in the SM and used for the most vehicle traffic.]

In preparation for tomorrow’s (~3:13pm EST) planned periodic RS Solar Array Efficiency Test, requiring thruster firing, Fincke closed the protective shutters on the Lab and JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) science windows.

The FE-2 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, replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers and performing US condensate processing (transfer from CWC to EDV containers) if condensate is available.]

Sandy also conducted the regular daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance task by updating/editing the IMS standard “delta file” including stowage locations for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

Mike completed the weekly 10-min. CWC (Contingency Water Container) inventory as part of on-going WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated “cue cards” based on the crew’s water calldowns are sent up every other week. [The new card is 18-0006N.]

At ~3:20pm EST, FE-2 Magnus had her 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).

At ~5:45am EST, the crewmembers downlinked PAO TV messages of greetings to three Russian events: (1) to the Expedition 19 crew plus guest cosmonaut Charles Simonyi, to become a part of a new film which will be shown to Soyuz TMA-14 crew on the day of the launch; (2) to teachers and students of Yuri A. Gagarin’s high school No. 1 in the town of Gagarin on the occasion of Gagarin’s 75th birthday (May 9, 2009), and (3) to the participants and guests of the XXXVI Public Science Readings dedicated to the memory of Y. A. Gagarin, to be held from March 9 through March 12, 2009, in the town of Gagarin to coincide with his 75th birthday.

CEO photo targets uplinked for today were Bosumtwi Impact Crater, Ghana (this well-marked impact crater is located about 150 km west of the south end of Lake Volta in south central Ghana. It is a very young impact [just over a million years old], about 10.5 km in diameter, and almost completely filled by a lake. There are only a few images of this crater in the CEO database because the area is usually cloud and/or haze covered), and Volcan Colima, Mexico (weather was predicted to be mostly clear over the Colima volcanic complex. Two large cones, Nevado de Colima and Volcan de Colima are the most prominent features. Looking left of track towards the volcano. Clouds typically cover the summits of these volcanic cones, however, gray or white plumes may still be observed from Volcan de Colima).

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, 4:33am EST [= epoch]):
Mean altitude — 355.6 km
Apogee height — 362.1 km
Perigee height — 349.2 km
Period — 91.65 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0009533
Solar Beta Angle — -2.1 deg (magnitude bottoming out)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 68m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 58852

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
03/06/09 — Flight Readiness Review for STS-119/Discovery/15A launch
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.