Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 3 November 2008

By SpaceRef Editor
November 3, 2008
Filed under , , ,
NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 3 November 2008

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 2 of Increment 18. >>Today 51 years ago (1957), Soviet Chief Designer Sergei Pavlovich Korolev launched the first living passenger into orbit – the little canine “proto-cosmonaut” Laika (“Barker”) with Sputnik-2 on an R7 “Semyorka”.<<

With yesterday’s time change, crew work begins now at 1:00am EST and ends at 4:30pm, with the one-hour lunch break at about 7:00am.

FE-2 Chamitoff started his day with his third week-long session with the SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight) experiment, using the payload software for data logging and filling in questionnaire entries in the experiment’s laptop session file on the HRF-1 laptop. [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. 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.]

Before breakfast, CDR Fincke began Part 1 (of 5) of the periodic acoustic measurement protocol by deploying crew-worn acoustic dosimeters, to be carried by all crewmembers for 24 hours (with a microphone on the shirt collar). (Last time done: 9/8-9/9). [Tonight, after about 15 hours of measurements, dosimeter data will be downloaded and the hardware power-cycled for another data take starting tonight after 8.5-hr. sleep. At that point, the crew will deploy the dosimeters statically in the station for the duration of the day, record measurements tomorrow noon and stow the instruments. Acoustic data must be taken twice per Increment, each time for the duration of the 16-hour crew workday.]

Most of Fincke’s & Chamitoff’s time today was assigned to hardware prepacking for the 15-day Shuttle mission ULF2, preceded by a prepack conference with ground specialists via S-band at ~8:05am EST, and an OBT (On-board Training) review of the STS-126/ULF2 docked timeline, followed by a discussion with MCC-H specialists via teleconference. Some highlights follow:

  • STS-126/ULF2/Endeavour, the 124th Shuttle mission (the 27th to the station), will be crewed by CDR Chris Ferguson, PLT Eric Boe, MS1 Donald Pettit, MS2/EV2 Steve Bowen, MS3/EV1 Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper, MS4/EV3 Shane Kimbrough, and MS5/ Exp-18 FE-2 Sandra Magnus.
  • ISS wake/sleep cycle will be shifted from 1:00am EST to 4:30am on FD2, then to 9:30am on FD3. The early undock time (10:32am) drives crew wakeup 2.5 hrs earlier, to 7:00am by FD14. The shift is completed by moving crew sleep 30 min earlier on FD4, and then one hour earlier each day on FD12 and 13.
  • MPLM “Leonardo” will be installed on Node-2 on FD4; ingress same day just before Presleep. MPLM transfers start FD5 with four racks, followed by 8 racks, including the Galley (ER6), on FD6.
  • Focused Orbiter inspection is nominally planned for FD6. However, since the installed MPLM will obstruct a small area on the lower starboard wing for Focused inspection, MPLM berthing could be delayed to FD5 if the Debris Assessment Team, in reviewing the RPM imagery on the evening of FD3, identifies an area of concern associated with the starboard wing. Late inspection will be completed in its entirety after the Shuttle undocks on FD14. Endeavour will be undocking with the OBSS (Orbiter Boom Sensor System) on the SRMS (Shuttle Remote Manipulator System) in preparation for that inspection.
  • Four EVAs are planned during the mission. MS2, MS3, and MS4 will rotate all EVAs. General EVA tasks are:
    1. EVA-1 – NTA (Nitrogen Tank Assembly) transfer to Shuttle PLB, FHRC (Flex Hose Rotary Coupler) transfer to ESP-3, EFBM Cover Removal, Stbd SARJ (Solar Array Rotary Joint) Cleaning/TBA (Trundle Bearing Assembly) R&R.
    2. EVA-2 – CETA Cart Relocation, LEE A Lubrication, Stbd SARJ Cleaning/TBA R&R.
    3. EVA-3SARJ cleaning/TBA R&R.
    4. EVA-4 – Port SARJ lubing, EFBM cover install, ETVCG Install, JLP GPS Antenna Install, JEM Handrails/WIFs Install, IR and Digital Imagery of S1/P1 Radiators.
  • Generic face-to-face handover time between Chamitoff & Magnus will be 12 hrs max; Gregory will remain on the ISS until the day before undocking and will be scheduled as an ISS crewmember.
  • Endeavour will be powered by the SSPTS (Station-Shuttle Power Transfer System) from post-docking to just before undocking. During the mated mission when ISS solar arrays are feathered for attitude maneuvers and EVA operations, SSPTS may be powered off to maintain station power margin.
  • 30 hrs are required for transfer ops to/from the Shuttle middeck and 105 hours for MPLM. With all the timelined activities and rack transfers scheduled, ULF2 will be a highly choreographed transfer mission. The Shuttle crew has been thoroughly trained on the details of the choreography. In addition, each day a transfer message will be uplinked, listing specific items that need to be transferred that day due to operations requiring the items.

FE-1 Lonchakov started a new round of the periodic (monthly) preventive maintenance of RS (Russian Segment) ventilation systems in the DC1 (Docking Compartment) by cleaning the PF1 & PF2 dust collectors in its air duct system and the protective mesh screens of the V1 & V2 ventilator fans. Later, Yuri moved to the FGB (Funktsionalnyi-Grusovoi Blok) to clean the vent grills of the three SOTR (thermal control system) gas-liquid heat exchangers (GZhT-1, -2, -3).

Mike Fincke terminated IWIS (Internal Wireless Instrumentation System) software commanding and prepared for the “deep sleep” recovery of the IWIS RSU (Internal Wireless Integrated System/Remote Sensor Unit) system (listed yesterday as a discretionary entry on the “job jar” task list). [The hardware will remain powered on for tomorrow’s (11/4) dedicated thruster firing. IWIS RSUs collect structural dynamics data on the ISS structure during specific “disturbance” events such as thruster firings, docking/undocking, etc.]

Yuri Lonchakov conducted the regular status check and data collection on the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 ("Plants-2") experiment which researches growth and development of plants (peas) under spaceflight conditions in the LADA-13 greenhouse from IBMP (Institute of Bio-Medical Problems {Russian: IMBP}).

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 prepared it for a new round of experiment activities, downlinking all remaining data from the ALC-954 PCMCIA (Portable Computer Memory Card International Adapter) memory card via the RSK1 laptop and replacing it in the AST with a new card (ALC-955). 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.]

In the JAXA JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), Chamitoff retrieved two OIWIFs (On-orbit Install Worksite Interfaces) from a standoff. With Mike Fincke, he also unpacked and readied a JEM cargo bag containing four cables for the PROX-GPS antenna, required for HTV (H-II Transfer Vehicle) operations. [The PROX system, mostly located in the ICS (Inter-orbit Communication System) Rack, consists of a PROX antenna, a PROX-GPS (Global Positioning System) antenna, PROX comm equipment and an HCP (Hardware Command Panel) in the JPM, except for the antenna. When the HTV approaches the ISS, the PROX antenna, which contains GPS receivers, will initiate communications with the HTV. The ISS orbital location and speed are immediately relayed to the HTV through the PROX. At the same time, data from the HTV are relayed to the ISS. In addition, the antenna relays commands sent from the ground to the HTV.]

FE-1 Lonchakov again had an hour to himself for general orientation (station familiarization & acclimatization) as is standard daily rule for fresh crewmembers for the first two weeks after starting station residence, if she/he chooses to take it.

At ~4:20pm EST, just before sleep time, Yuri will set up the Russian MBI-12 SONOKARD (Sonocard) payload and start his second experiment session, using a sports shirt from the SONOKARD kit with a special device in the pocket for testing a new method for acquiring physiological data without using direct contact on the skin. Measurements are recorded on a data card for return to Earth. [SONOKARD objectives are stated to (1) study the feasibility of obtaining the maximum of data through computer processing of records obtained overnight, (2) systematically record the crewmember’s physiological functions during sleep, (3) study the feasibility of obtaining real-time crew health data. Investigators believe that contactless acquisition of cardiorespiratory data over the night period could serve as a basis for developing efficient criteria for evaluating and predicting adaptive capability of human body in long-duration space flight.]

The CDR completed the regular monthly TVIS maintenance, 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. [Mike’s downlinked report: “TVIS is looking great! All wire ropes and cords looking great and pass my inspection.”]

The crew performed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical workout program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (FE-2), TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1), RED resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-1, FE-2) and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1).

At ~4:00am EST, Mike Fincke powered up the SM’s amateur radio equipment (Kenwood VHF transceiver with manual frequency selection, headset, & power supply) and conducted, at 4:05am, a ham radio exchange with IES Trassierra, Cordoba, Spain, a Secondary Education School with 900 students located between a developing area and an area of low social-economical status. Its project "Sailing through Space" will help students to broaden their knowledge in the field of space and also will be a very important tool to motivate them to study. The project is going to last two years and it will include a wide variety of activities such as observing the sky from Cordoba, visiting the workshop that the Observatory of Granada brought to the school and making trips to the observatory situated in Toledo. Questions were uplinked to Mike beforehand. [“What kind of food do you eat? Do you have a special diet?”; “Are you in contact with your family?”; “How long have you been in the ISS?”; “What do you miss the most?”; “How long does it take to go to the space?”; “What is your favourite thing up there?”; “Have you ever felt frightened?”; “What is the weight of your spacesuit?”; “What is your mission onboard?”; “How do you have a shower?”.]

No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked today.

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, 8:44am EST [= epoch]):
Mean altitude — 352.1 km
Apogee height — 354.3 km
Perigee height — 350.0 km
Period — 91.58 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0003213
Solar Beta Angle — 1.9 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
Mean altitude loss in the last 48 hours — 70 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 57046

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible.):
11/14/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 launch – MPLM Leonardo, LMC; 7:55pm EST
11/16/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 docking; ~4:56pm
11/20/08 — ISS 10 Years
11/25/08 — Progress M-65/30P undocking & deorbit
11/26/08 — Progress M-66/31P launch
11/27/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 undocking; 10:32am
11/29/08 — STS-126/Endeavour/ULF2 landing ; ~2:01 pm
11/30/08 — Progress M-66/31P docking
02/09/09 — Progress M-66/31P undocking & deorbit
02/10/09 — Progress M-67/32P launch02/12/09 — Progress M-67/32P docking
02/12/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A launch – S6 truss segment
02/14/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A docking
02/24/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A undocking
02/26/09 — STS-119/Discovery/15A landing (nominal)
03/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S launch
03/27/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S docking (DC1)
04/05/09 — Soyuz TMA-13/17S undocking
04/07/09 — Progress M-67/32P undocking & deorbit
05/15/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD
05/25/09 — Soyuz TMA-15/19S launch
05/27/09 — Six-person crew on ISS (following Soyuz 19S docking)
07/30/09 — STS-128/Atlantis/17A – MPLM (P), last crew rotation
10/15/09 — STS-129/Discovery/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/10/09 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
02/11/10 — STS-131/Atlantis/19A – MPLM(P)
04/08/10 — STS-132/Discovery/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM1
05/31/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC3, ELC4 (contingency).

SpaceRef staff editor.