Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 3 August 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
August 4, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 3 August 2009

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 10 of Increment 20.

CDR Padalka completed R&R (Removal & Replacement) on the Russian GIVUS electronic box, and the control loop was activated with no issues. [GIVUS is a high-accuracy angular rate vector gyrometer of the Russian SUDN Motion Control & Navigation System which, with other accelerometers, provides unattended measurements of micro-accelerations at science hardware accommodation locations – (1) in operation of onboard equipment having rotating parts (gyrodynes, fans), (2) when establishing and keeping various ISS attitude modes, and (3) when performing crew egresses into space and physical exercises.]

Later, Padalka supported the activation of the Elektron oxygen generator at 24 amps by the ground by monitoring the external temperature of its secondary purification unit (BD) for the first 10 minutes of operations to ensure that there was no overheating. [The gas analyzer used on the Elektron during nominal operations for detecting hydrogen (H2) in the O2 line (which could cause overheating) is not included in the control algorithm until 10 minutes after Elektron startup. Elektron had been turned off for the GIVUS R&R since the BITS2-12 onboard telemetry measurement system and VD-SU control system mode were deactivated for this activity.]

For FE-4 Thirsk, the day began with the extended “Bisphosphonates” biomedical countermeasures experiment for which he ingested an Alendronate pill before breakfast. [The Bisphosphonates study should determine whether antiresorptive agents (that help reduce bone loss) in conjunction with the routine in-flight exercise program will protect ISS crewmembers from the regional decreases in bone mineral density documented on previous ISS missions. Two dosing regimens will be tested: (1) an oral dose of 70 mg of Alendronate taken weekly starting 3 weeks prior to flight and then throughout the flight and (2) an intravenous (IV) dose of 4 mg Zoledronic Acid, administered just once approximately 45 days before flight. The rationale for including both Alendronate and Zoledronic Acid is that two dosing options will maximize crew participation, increase the countermeasure options available to flight surgeons, increase scientific opportunities, and minimize the effects of operational and logistical constraints. The primary measurement objective is to obtain preflight and postflight QCT (Quantitative Computed Tomography) scans of the hip. The QCT scans will provide volumetric bone density information of both cortical and trabecular (spongy) bone regions of the hip.]

In the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), Bob Thirsk configured the JAXA biomedical experiment BIORHYTHM and its body-worn digital Walk Holter ECG (Electrocardiograph) and then started data recording as Subject for his second on-board session, with the FE-5 acting as Operator. The ECG is being recorded for 24 hrs.

After Frank De Winne, as CMO (Crew Medical Officer), set up the video camcorder for ground-commanded recording of the subsequent CEVIS (Cycle Ergometer with Vibration Isolation) activity, Bob Thirsk, as Subject, undertook the PFE (Periodic Fitness Evaluation) protocol, a monthly 1.5-hr. procedure which checks up on blood pressure and electrocardiogram (ECG) during programmed exercise on the CEVIS 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. Afterwards, De Winne and Thirsk switched places, and Frank became Subject of the PFE protocol, with Bob acting 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.]

In the US A/L (Airlock), Mike Barratt and Tim Kopra performed maintenance on the BCM (Battery Charger Module). [Maintenance includes BCM-4 removal from A/L1F1 (which requires rack rotation), Multimeter resistance checks, BCM reconfiguration, and disconnection of the Power Supply Assembly (PSA) sneak circuit.]

Gennady Padalka set up and started the SSTV (Slow Scan TV) equipment for conducting the MAI-75 experiment as part of OBR-3 (Obrazovanie-3, Education 3) ops, essentially a ham radio set-up with Kenwood VS-N1 (Visual Communicator) gear for downlinking photographic images to ground stations, including one at MAI (Moscow Aviation Institute). [The payload is named after the renowned MAI whose reputation is based on the large number of famous aviators and rocket scientists that received their academic education here. Among the alumni are Academicians and Corresponding Members of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Over 100 General and Chief Designers earned their degree at MAI, with famous rocket scientists like Makeyev, Mishin, Nadiradze and Yangel. MAI also fostered 20 Pilot-Cosmonauts, almost 100 famous test pilots, Heroes of the Soviet Union and Russia. The amateur radio (ham) equipment aboard the ISS for downlinking SSTV imagery is an MAI product.]

FE-1 Barratt performed the periodic inspection and cleaning of the PWD (Potable Water Dispenser) in the US Lab.

Later, Mike conducted the regular weekly maintenance on the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization), primarily inspecting the condition of the SLDs, SLD cables and SPDs (Subject Positioning Devices), lubricating as required, plus recording time & date values. [Particular attention was requested on inspecting, marking & recording any visible SLD damages.]

Frank De Winne started (later terminated) another 5-hr automatic sampling run, the 19th, with the new EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health System Gas Chromatograph/Differential Mobility Spectrometer), also known as AQM (Air Quality Monitor), controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC-4 (Station Support Computer 4) laptop. [The AQM demonstrates COTS (Commercial Off-the-Shelf) technology for identifying volatile organic compounds, similar to the VOA (Volatile Organics Analyzer). Today’s data will again to be compared with VOA and GSC (Grab Sample Container) measurements. This evaluation will continue over the course of several months as it helps to eventually certify the GC/DMS as nominal CHeCS hardware.]

Padalka & Romanenko spent several hours on cargo transfers from the Progress 34P to the ISS, logging moves in the IMS (Inventory Management System).

Roman did 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).

Gennady completed 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.]

Tim Kopra had another hour to himself for general orientation (station familiarization & acclimatization) as is standard daily rule for fresh crewmembers for the first two weeks after starting residence, if they choose to take it.

Barratt performed the periodic inspection of the probes of the four onboard CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Products) units.

Thirsk & De Winne updated the onboard Emergency & Warning SODFs (Station Operations Data Files) with new material arrived on Progress 34P.

BCM Update: In the A/L, this morning the crew removed BCM #4 (Battery Charger Module 4) from the A/L1F1 rack, which requires rack rotation, and performed multimeter resistance checks, BCM reconfiguration, and disconnection of the Power Supply Assembly (PSA) sneak circuit. which was declared failed on July 6, 2009, with new hardware brought up on 34 Progress. Following the replacement, a review of GIVUS telemetry verified the R&R was successful and GIVUS was powered on and placed into the control loop. The Optical Reference Target (ORT) was deactivated. GIVUS is now prime attitude determination state for Russian attitude. BCM #4 is scheduled to be returned to the ground via the 17A mission for analysis and refurbishment. [Background: In March of this year BCM #4 failed to terminate the discharge of an EMU battery in Channel 4, rendering the battery unusable for EVAs. The crew manually terminated the discharge. During subsequent on orbit troubleshooting the unit performed nominally indicating that this problem is intermittent.]

New Software Load (On-Orbit X2-R8, PCS R12 & MSS R6.2): Beginning this morning the CCS (Command & Control System), MSS (Mobile Servicing System), and PCS (Portable Computer System) onboard software modules are being upgraded to R8, R6.1, & R12 respectively. The procedure involves a four day transition to confirm stability of the software during the process. Activities today consist of building the uplink and data load commands for CCS R8 and MSS R6.1 and uplinking the MSS files to the backup and standby C&C MDMs

CDRA Update: The US Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) continues to operate satisfactorily after completion of the repairs to the unit last week. The damaged heater controller unit will be returned to the ground for refurbishment and return to the ISS for use as a spare. A decision is pending concerning whether to remove the emergency software change that was implemented for CDRA to ignore the RPC status’ in order to allow the unit to mode to operate.

The crew completed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical workout program on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation (CDR, FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-4), ARED (FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-4, FE-5), and VELO cycle ergometer with bungee cord load trainer (CDR).

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
08/07/09 — PMA-3 relocation to Node- 1 Port (~7:35am EDT)
08/25/09 — STS-128/Discovery/17A launch – MPLM (P), LMC (~1:36am EDT)
09/10/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) launch (~1:00pm EDT)
09/16/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) berth w/SSRMS
09/29/09 — Progress 34P undock
09/30/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S launch
10/02/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S docking (SM aft, until MRM-2 w/new port)
10/08/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) unberth
10/11/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S undock
10/15/09 — Progress 35P launch
11/10/09 — 5R/MRM-2 (Russian Mini Research Module 2) on Soyuz-U
11/12/09 — STS-129/Atlantis/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/07/09 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S launch
12/26/09 — Progress 36P launch
02/03/10 — Progress 37P launch
02/04/10 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
03/18/10 — STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC
04/02/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch
04/27/10 — Progress 38P launch
05/14/10 — STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1
05/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch
06/25/10 — Progress 39P launch
07/29/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC4, MPLM
08/11/10 — Progress 40P launch
09/16/10 — STS-134/Discovery/ULF6 – ELC3, AMS
09/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch
10/19/10 — Progress 41P launch
11/??/10 — ATV2 – Ariane 5 (ESA)
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton

SpaceRef staff editor.