Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 29 October 2010

By SpaceRef Editor
October 29, 2010
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 29 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 second blood collection of the Generic HRF (Human Research Facility) protocol, with FE-6 Walker assisting with the phlebotomy as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Scott then set up the RC (Refrigerated Centrifuge) for spinning the samples prior to storing them in the MELFI (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS) and stowed the equipment. Before sleeptime, Scott will also make ready the equipment for his 2nd 24-hr Generic HRF urine collections, scheduled for tomorrow. [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.]

Scott had about 3.5h set aside for inflight research with the CFE ICF2 (Capillary Flow Experiment/Interior Corner Flow 2) experiment, first setting up and testing the hardware, including HD (high definition) camcorder, in the MWA (Maintenance Work Area) in the US Lab, then running the operations and later tearing the equipment down and putting it back in stowage with MWA and camcorder. [CFE has applications to the management of liquid fuels, cryogens, water-based solutions and thermal fluids in spacecraft systems. ICF is one of three CFE experiments, the others being Vane Gap (VG) and Contact Line (CL). Each of the CFE experiments is represented with two unique experimental units (1,2), all of which use similar fluid-injection hardware, have simple and similarly sized test chambers, and rely solely on video for highly quantitative data. Silicone oil is the fluid used for all the tests, with different viscosities depending on the unit. Differences between units are primarily fluid properties, wetting conditions, and test cell cross section.]

Shannon Walker did the periodic reboot of all active PCS (Portable Computer System) and COL PWS (Columbus Orbital Laboratory Portable Work Station) laptops (PWS done once/month), then recorded the battery SOC (state of charge) of the machines. [Currently active PCS: Lab, A/L (Airlock), Cupola, SM (Service Module), JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory); PWS1 & 2: COL.]

At ~10:00am EDT, Walker & Yurchikhin tagged up with ground specialists to discuss the ground-analyzed 400 & 800mm-lens photo/video training imagery that resulted from their latest RPM (R-bar Pitch Maneuver) drill on 10/27. [The RPM drill prepares crewmembers for the bottom-side mapping of the Orbiter at the arrival of the Shuttle (STS-133/Discovery/ULF5) on 11/4. During the RPM at ~600 ft from the station, the “shooters” have only ~90 seconds for taking high-resolution digital photographs of all tile areas and door seals on Discovery, to be downlinked for launch debris assessment. Thus, time available for the shooting will be very limited, requiring great coordination between the two headset-equipped photographers and the Shuttle pilot.]

After setting up the video equipment to document operations, CDR Wheelock reconfigured the CubeLab hardware in the US Lab, removing CubeLab Module-1 from the CubeLab frame in ER4 (EXPRESS Rack 4), Locker 3, for prepacking to return on ULF5. [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],

Afterwards, Wheels had ~2h for pre-gathering & preparing EVA support items for ULF5 in the A/L, including inspection and photo documentation of signal conditioners in the EVA service kit. [EVA preparations & emergency equipment gathering will be completed by Wheelock and the Shuttle crew on FD4 (Flight Day 4).]

The three Russian Flight Engineers performed the regular weekly three-hour task of thorough cleaning of their home. [“Uborka”, usually done on Saturdays but pulled forward a day because of the pending Progress arrival, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, damp cleaning of the SM dining table, other frequently touched surfaces and surfaces where trash is collected, as well as the sleep stations with a standard cleaning solution; also, fan screens and grilles are cleaned to avoid temperature rises. Special cleaning is also done every 90 days on the HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) bacteria filters in the Lab.]

In preparation for Progress M-08M/40P docking tomorrow, FE-1 Kaleri & FE-2 Skripochka tagged up with ground instructors at TsUP/Moscow via S-band/audio for a one-hour refresher discussion of the TORU teleoperator system operations during rendezvous & docking. TORU provides a manual backup mode to the Progress’ KURS automated rendezvous radar system. A tagup with a TORU instructor supported the training. [The TORU teleoperator control system lets a SM-based crewmember perform the approach and docking of automated Progress vehicles in case of KURS failure. During spacecraft approach, TORU is in “hot standby” mode. Receiving a video image of the approaching ISS, as seen from a Progress-mounted docking television camera (“Klest”), on a color monitor (“Simvol-Ts”, i.e. “symbol center”) which also displays an overlay of rendezvous data from the onboard digital computer, the CDR would steer the Progress to mechanical contact by means of two hand controllers, one for rotation (RUO), the other for translation (RUD), on adjustable armrests. The controller-generated commands are transmitted from the SM’s TORU control panel to the Progress via VHF radio. In addition to the Simvol-Ts color monitor, range, range rate (approach velocity) and relative angular position data are displayed on the “Klest-M” video monitor (VKU) which starts picking up signals from Progress when it is still approximately 8 km away. TORU is monitored in real time from TsUP over Russian ground sites (RGS) and via Ku-band from Houston, but its control cannot be taken over from the ground. On 10/30 tomorrow), Progress KURS-A (active) will be activated at 11:06am EDT on Daily Orbit 1 (DO1), SM KURS-P (passive) two minutes later. Progress floodlight will be switched on at a range of ~8 km. Flyaround to the DC1 nadir port (~400 m range, in sunlight) starts at 12:17:28pm, followed by station keeping at 170m at ~12:24:40pm. Start of final approach: ~12:28:30pm (DO2) in sunlight, contact: ~12:39:30pm after local sunset (12:29pm). SM Kurs-P deactivation on mechanical capture.]

Preparatory to the ground’s unpowering the OGS (Oxygen Generator System), the CDR accessed the OGS Rack and then performed hydrogen purging with the HOPA (Hydrogen Sensor ORU Purge Adapter).

Later, Wheels retrieved the HRF (Human Research Facility) Electronic Media Kit (13A.1) and consolidated its contents for its planned return on ULF5. [Steps included verifying current contents, collecting & inserting additional items such as hard disk drives and the CD-ROM wallet, and packing them with foam to provide maximum protection.]

Skripochka conducted 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.]

Kaleri terminated the overnight (10-hr) charging of the KPT-2 Piren battery for the new Piren-V Pyro-endoscope, part of the Russian BAR science instruments suite (other BAR components being the -2 Anemometer-Thermometer, the charger cable, and the video display unit). [Piren-V, a video-endoscope with pyrosensor, is part of the methods & means being used on ISS for detecting tiny leaks in ISS modules which could lead to cabin depressurization. Objective of the Russian KPT-12/EXPERT science payload is to measure environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, air flow rate) and module shell surface temperatures behind SM panels and other areas susceptible to possible micro-destruction (corrosion), before and after insolation (day vs. night). Besides Piren-V, the payload uses a remote infrared thermometer (Kelvin-Video), a thermohygrometer (Iva-6A), a heat-loss thermoanemometer/thermometer (TTM-2) and an ultrasound analyzer (AU) to determine environmental data in specific locations and at specific times. Activities include documentary photography with the NIKON D2X camera and flash.]

Yurchikhin completed the maintenance on the SOTR Thermal Control System begun yesterday by removing & replacing the damper of the VTK2 ventilator in the SM.

Shannon Walker completed a long list of activities including –

* Disconnecting the Ku-Band power supply on the BCAT-5 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-5) hardware and returning the SSC-20 (Station Support Computer 20) power string to the SSCR (Station-to-Shuttle Communications Router) on the ISS LAN (Local Area Network) in Node-2 for use during ULF5 docked ops [SSCR will enable wireless connectivity between the Shuttle and Station LANs (Local Area Networks), allowing the Shuttle to shut down its own Ku-band to help save fuel cell cryo],

* Filling out her 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],

* Swabbing samples for microbial analysis at selected locations in the JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) using wet wipes and a sampling sheet, after taking documentary photography of the sampling locations [samples were inserted in MELFI and the locations cleaned up],

* Readying the Node-1 nadir hatch latch for PMM (Permanent Multipurpose Module) arrival by setting it to Unlatch to minimize the probability of hatch mechanism jam prior to the berthing,

* Installing & checking out the CBCS (Centerline Berthing Camera System) at Node-1 nadir, with its power, video and control unit connections,

* Completing a session with the U.S. VIS (Visual Acuity) testing program, using an eye chart for both far & near visual acuity and filling out an eye questionnaire, to be downloaded on a laptop for ground access,

* Setting up EMU (Extravehicular Mobility Unit) batteries in the A/L BSA (Battery Stowage Assembly) for the charge/discharge maintenance cycle, and

* Working on the ARED advanced resistive exerciser to conduct its periodic visual inspection, checking out the rails & rollers and greasing the Y- and Z-axes rails & rollers.

Before crew sleep time, Scott Kelly will be the subject for the PanOptic eye test which requires application of eye drops (Tropicamide [Mydriacyl]) causing eye dilation for subsequent ophthalmic examination, performed by Wheels as CMO with an ophthalmoscope. [The procedure, guided by special software on the T61p RoBOT laptop (#1026), captures still & video images of the eye, including the posterior poles, macula & optic disc with the optic nerve, for downlink and expert analysis. Prior to the test, Doug sets up the equipment including video camera, and afterwards disassembles and stores the gear.]

At ~4:10am EDT, Shannon powered up the SM’s amateur radio equipment (Kenwood VHF transceiver with manual frequency selection, headset, & power supply) and at 4:15am conducted a ham radio session with students at Funakata Elementary School, Nagoya, Aichi, Japan.

At ~10:15am, Kaleri, Yurchikhin & Skripochka downlinked TV greetings & well-wishes to three Russian PAO events: (1) the 10th Anniversary of Russia’s Federal State Defense Industry Export Enterprise ROSOBORONEXPORT, which will be observed on 11/4 (one of the business interests of the enterprise being the export of products and services to space and information technology fields); (2) to the participants of the IV Russkiy Mir Assembly on 11/3 at the Intellectual Center of M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University (which will announce the launch of the international event “The First in Space”, dedicated to the 50th Anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s flight); and (3) answering questions submitted by the “Russia Today” TV Channel for airing on 11/2 as part of a full day news-format broadcast dedicated to the 10th Anniversary of the first crew arrival on ISS. [Questions: “What do you think: Did ISS meet the expectations held 10 years ago?”, “What extent of comfort can the ISS offer for life? What are the best and the worst features?”, “What changes would you like to see in the future?”]

At ~11:15am, Shannon had her regular IMS (Inventory Management System) stowage conference with Houston stowage specialists.

At ~4:00pm, the crew will hold their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-Houston.

At ~5:15pm, Wheels is scheduled for 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).

The crew worked out on today’s 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-3, FE-6), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2, FE-5), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR) 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.]

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Victoria, Seychelles (looking right of track. Victoria is the capital city of the Republic of Seychelles. Victoria is located on the northeastern side of Mahe Island, the largest island of the archipelago. Overlapping mapping frames of the urban area were requested), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (looking far left of track, using the Rift Valley and lakes for reference. Addis Ababa has a population of more than 3 million. As the capital of Ethiopia and home of the African Union, it has communities representing 80 nationalities. It is growing fast, and the crew was requested to shoot images of the urban fringe where change is focused), and Woollya Cove, Chile (HMS Beagle site. Looking right of track on the far side of Tierra del Fuego. Visual cues are first the wide spit of land [Tierra del Fuego, “Land of Fire”] and then the narrow strip of water known as the Beagle Channel. The target is the waterway on the south side of Beagle Channel. Darwin and Captain Fitzroy of HMS Beagle were disappointed to find that the mission station set up here some years earlier had been abandoned).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:38am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 353.1 km
Apogee height – 358.9 km
Perigee height – 347.3 km
Period — 91.60 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.65 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0008625
Solar Beta Angle — 25.2 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 36 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 68,459.

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

————–Six-crew operations————-
10/30/10 — Progress M-08M/40P docking (~12:39pm EDT)
11/02/10 — STS-133/Discovery launch (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) ~4:17pm EDT
11/04/10 — STS-133/Discovery docking
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.