Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status Report 16 September 2010

By SpaceRef Editor
September 16, 2010
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status Report 16 September 2010

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

At wake-up, CDR Alex Skvortsov 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 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). [The CDR 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-4 Wheelock & FE-6 Walker took the periodic 30-min US PHS (Periodic Health Status)/Without Blood Labs exam, assisting each other in turn as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Shannon later logged the data and stowed the equipment. A subjective evaluation was part of the test. [The assessment used the AMP (Ambulatory Medical Pack), stethoscope, oral disposable thermometer and ABPC (Automatic Blood Pressure Cuff) from the ALSP (Advanced Life Support Pack). All data were then logged on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) and the hardware stowed. The PHS exam is guided by special IFEP (In-Flight Examination Program) software on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) laptop.]

Alex Skvortsov & Mikhail Kornienko completed their 3rd preliminary orthostatic hemodynamic endurance test run with the Russian Chibis suit in preparation for their return to gravity on 9/24 with Soyuz 22S (along with Tracy Caldwell-Dyson). They conducted the ODNT exercise protocol in the below-the-waist reduced-pressure device (ODNT, US: LBNP/Lower Body Negative Pressure) on the TVIS treadmill. Each crewmember took turns as Subject and CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Alex was supported in his one-hour session by ground specialist tagup via VHF at 5:53am, Mikhail at 7:28am EDT. [The Chibis provides gravity-simulating stress to the body’s cardiovascular/circulatory system for evaluation of the crewmember’s orthostatic tolerance (e.g., the Gauer-Henry reflex) after his long-term stay in zero-G. Data output includes blood pressure readings. The preparatory training generally consists of first imbibing 150-200 milliliters of water or juice, followed by one cycle of a sequence of progressive regimes of reduced (“negative”) pressure, set at -25, -35, -40 and -45 mmHg for five min. each, while shifting from foot to foot at 10-12 steps per minute, while wearing a sphygmomanometer to measure blood pressure and the REG SHKO Rheoencephalogram Biomed Cap. The body’s circulatory system interprets the pressure differential between upper and lower body as a gravity-like force pulling the blood (and other liquids) down. Chibis data and biomed cardiovascular readings are recorded. The Chibis suit (not to be confused with the Russian “Pinguin” suit for spring-loaded body compression, or the "Kentavr" anti-g suit worn during reentry) is similar to the U.S. LBNP facility (not a suit) used for the first time on Skylab in 1973/74, although it appears to accomplish its purpose more quickly.]

Mikhail Kornienko continued the extended leak integrity checking of the spare BZh Liquid Unit (#056) for the Elektron O2 generator, repressed on 8/31 with nitrogen (N2) to 1 atm (1 kg/cm2), by conducting the usual pressure check and recharging it with N2 from BPA-1M Nitrogen Purge Unit as required to verify the unit’s hermeticity. [Objective of the monthly checkout of the spare BZh, which has been in stowage since March 2007, is to check for leakage and good water passage through the feed line inside of the BZh (from ZL1 connector to the buffer tank) and to check the response of the Electronics Unit’s micro switches (signaling “Buffer Tank is Empty” & “Buffer Tank is Full”. During Elektron operation, the inert gas locked up in the BZh has the purpose to prevent dangerous O2/H2 mixing. A leaking BZh cannot be used.]

FE-5 Yurchikhin had 5 hrs set aside for extensive work on three Orlan-M spacesuits (#4, #5, #6), removing & replacing their PO-5 display panels.

CDR Skvortsov performed the regular inspection of the replaceable half-coupling of the 4GB4 hydraulic unit of the KOB-2 (Loop 2) of the Russian SOTR Thermal Control System, checking for coolant fluid hermeticity (leak-tightness).

Kornienko serviced the running experiment TEKh-22 “Identifikatsiya” (Identification) in MRM1 (Mini Research Module 1) Rassvet, downloading structural dynamic data collected by the IMU-Ts microaccelerometer to the RSE1 A31p laptop for subsequent downlink to the ground via OCA. (Last time done: 9/13).

Tracy Caldwell-Dyson worked her way through a long task list which included –

  • First setting up the Lab video gear for covering activities, then removing FIR/ARIS (Fluid Integrated Rack / Active Rack Isolation System) alignment guides in support of ground-commanded microgravity rack testing, then monitoring ARIS range control stability during the operations. Later, she installed the alignment guides again before FIR powerdown;
  • Working in COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) on the ESA BLB (Biolab), where she supported run-in tests of the ATCS (Automatic Temperature Controlled Stowage) areas 1 & 2 by first introducing, then removing thermal masses for temperature behavior checks;
  • Offloading condensate water from a CWC (Contingency Water Container) to the WPA WWT (Water Processor Assembly / Waste Water Tank) for processing, using the LFTP (Low Flow Transfer Pump);
  • Collecting a 300 mL sample from the WWT, after a 300 mL purge of the Line B hose;
  • Taking a pH sample of the AR OGS (Atmosphere Revitalization / Oxygen Generation System)’s recirculation loop;
  • Removing the alignment guides from the CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack) to allow PaRIS (Passive Rack Isolation System) to be activated before ground-commanded CIR operations requiring a microgravity environment;
  • Replacing BCR (Bar Code Reader) #1008 with BCR #1003 plus initiating charging the latter’s battery for the next 24r hrs, and
  • Performing the regular 30-day inspection of the AED (Automated External Defibrillator) in the CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) rack [AED is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses the potentially life threatening cardiac arrhythmias of ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia in a patient. It then can treat them through defibrillation, i.e., the application of electrical therapy which stops the arrhythmia, allowing the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm.]

Also in COL, Caldwell-Dyson adjusted the holding fixture of the VIS (Vessel ID System), then reconfigured VIS cabling by rerouting its RF & receiver cables to allow VHF signals to bypass the RF Filter and arrive unfiltered at the NORAIS receiver. [NORAIS (Norwegian Automatic Identification System) is an improvement and advancement of AIS (Automatic Identification System), the short range coastal traffic system used by ship and vessel traffic services around the world. The primary goals of the ISS-based NORAIS experiment are to receive and decode AIS messages globally, as well as to aid in the development of an operational system. The NORAIS receiver is financed under the ESA GSTP (General Support Technology).]

For providing power to the VIS payload, Tracy afterwards reconfigured the ERNObox power supply in COL. [ESA’s ERNObox contains various radiation devices.]

Also in COL, Doug Wheelock & Shannon Walker began with the long-awaited assembly and installation of the extensive MARES (Muscle Atrophy Resistive Exercise System) payload hardware. [First steps today included setting up the VCA (Video Camera Assembly) and digital still camera to support documentary video & photography, unstowing the MARES components from the launch configuration (most of it stowed in the JAXA JPL {JEM Logistics Pressurized Segment}), assembling the electronics into the Main Box and configuring other components. Background: The ESA MARES will be used for research on musculoskeletal, biomechanical, and neuromuscular human physiology to better understand the effects of microgravity on the muscular system. MARES hardware comprises an adjustable chair and human restraint system, a pantograph (an articulated arm supporting the chair, used to properly position the user), a direct drive motor, associated electronics and experiment programming software, a linear adapter that translates motor rotation into linear movements, and a vibration isolation frame. It is capable of supporting measurements & exercise on seven different human joints, encompassing nine different angular movements, as well as two additional linear movements (arms and legs). It is considerably more advanced than current ground-based medical dynamometers (devices used to measure force or torque) and a vast improvement over existing ISS muscle research facilities. MARES may be used together with an associated device called the PEMS II (Percutaneous Electrical Muscle Stimulator II).]

Wheels completed the weekly 10-min. CWC inventory as part of the 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 for recording changes. [The current card (24-0007K) lists 122 CWCs (2,792.2 L total) for the five types of water identified on board: 1. technical water (24 CWCs with 998.2 L, for Elektron electrolysis, incl. 712.7 L in 17 bags containing Wautersia bacteria, 134.2 L in 3 clean bags for contingency use, 128.3 L in 3 bags for flushing only with microbial filter, and 23.0 L in 1 bag for flushing only; 2. potable water (5 CWCs with 215.4 L, of which 1 bag with 43.6 L requires sample analysis, 1 bag with 42.5 L are to be used with microbial filter & 129.3 L in 3 bags are good for contingency use; 3. iodinated water (84 CWCs with 1,550.1 L for reserve; 4. condensate water (6.3 L, in 1 bag with 6.3 L to be used only for OGA, plus 6 empty bags; and 5. waste/EMU dump and other (22.2 L, in 1 CWC with 20.2 L from hose/pump flush & 1 bag with 2.00 L from EMU dump). Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

FE-3 Kornienko had 2h 50m reserved for doing his 6th onboard session of the Russian biomedical MBI-15 "Pilot-M"/NEURO signal response experiment after setting up the workplace and equipment, assisted by FE-5 Yurchikhin. Later, the Pilot-M & Neurolab-2000M gear was disassembled & stowed away, data files were downloaded, and Misha reported to TsUP on his run. [MBI-15 requires the Multipurpose Hardware Bench as a table, ankle restraint system, eyeball electrodes for an EOG (electrooculogram), and two hand controllers (RUO & RUD) for testing piloting skill in “flying” simulations on a laptop (RSK1) with software (v. 2.0) under stopwatch control, as well as for studying special features of the psychophysiologic response of cosmonauts to the effects of stress factors in flight.]

FE-5 Yurchikhin meanwhile completed the periodic transfer of condensate water to an RS EDV container for the periodic (about twice a month) replenishing of the Elektron’s water supply for electrolysis into oxygen & (waste) hydrogen, filling the designated KOV (condensate water) EDV container from a CWC (Contingency Water Container). When filled, the EDV was connected to the BPK transfer pump for processing through the BKO water purification (multifiltration) unit. [The 40-minute procedure is specially designed to prevent air bubbles larger than ~10 mm from getting into the Elektron’s BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown. If bubbles are detected in the EDV, they are separated (by centrifugation) into another EDV. BKO contains five purification columns to rid the condensate of dissolved mineral and organic impurities. It has a service lifetime of ~450 liters throughput. The water needs to be purified for proper electrolysis in the Elektron O2 generator.]

For the Russian experiment BTKh-11 Biodegradatsiya ("Biodegradation”), Alexander collected the periodic bio samples from specific equipment and structures in the SM behind panels 139 & 407 for subsequent stowage in the Soyuz TMA-18 Descent Module for microbial analysis on Earth. [The activities were documented with the Nikon D2X digital camera with SB 28DX flash attachment for downlink via OCA.]

In the DC1 Docking Compartment, Kornienko serviced the BTKh-26 CASCADE payload, removing it from the TBU temperature-controlled incubator, performing the mixing process in the KT thermostatic container and returning it to the TBU, set at +29 degC. Alex Skvortsov photographed the action.

Later, the CDR took photographs of Mikhail servicing the BTKh-14 BIOEMULSIYA (Bioemulsion) payload, first conducting its sterilization in the Russian Glovebox, then placing it with the bioreactor into the KT at +4 degC.

Before sleeptime, Sasha also will initiate charging the DZZ-12 Rusalka payload battery for another observation session scheduled tomorrow.

FE-6 Walker supported POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center/Huntsville) by downlinking digital video records. [After powering on the Payload MPC (Multi-Protocol Converter) to start data flow, and POIC routing the onboard HRDL (High Rate Data Link) system, Shannon played back/downlinked CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment) video, JEM MPC troubleshooting video, and then the latest “Kids in Micro-G” footage. MPC was turned off about 4 hrs later.]

For the JAXA MPC troubleshooting video, Shannon used the G1 camcorder in JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) to record the MPC’s DC power supply condition by recording its noise and function.

Later, FE-6 set up the equipment for the saliva collection of the INTEGRATED IMMUNE protocol scheduled for Wheels and herself first thing tomorrow morning. [INTEGRATED IMMUNE (Validating Procedures for Monitoring Crew member Immune Function) samples & analyzes participant’s blood, urine, and saliva before, during and after flight for changes related to functions like bone metabolism, oxidative damage and immune function to develop and validate an immune monitoring strategy consistent with operational flight requirements and constraints. The strategy uses both long and short duration crewmembers as study subjects. The saliva is collected in two forms, dry and liquid. The dry samples are collected at intervals during the collection day using a specialized book that contains filter paper. The liquid saliva collections require that the crewmember soak a piece of cotton inside their mouth and place it in a salivette bag; there are four of the liquid collections during docked operations. The on-orbit blood samples are collected right before undocking and returned to the ground so that analysis can occur with 48 hours of the sampling. This allows assays that quantify the function of different types of white blood cells and other active components of the immune system. Samples are secured in the MELFI (Minus-Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS). Also included are entries in a fluid/medications intact log, and a stress-test questionnaire to be filled out by the subject at begin and end. Urine is collected during a 24-hour period, conventionally divided into two twelve-hour phases: morning-evening and evening-morning.]

The CDR did the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance by 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).

Alex also 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.]

Sasha, Tracy & Misha again had an hour each set aside for personal crew departure preparations, standard pre-return procedures for crewmembers.

At ~10:10am EDT, the six crewmembers convened for their standard bi-weekly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office (Steve Lindsey), via S-band S/G-2 audio & phone patch.

Wheels assembled & configured his Glenn harness with its transducer instrumentation for his exercise on the T2/COLBERT treadmill today, his 4th SDTO (Station Development Test Objective) session with the instrumented harness. [In order to maximize data acquisition, 8 transducers have been combined on the harness from both instrumentation kits and spares launched on Progress 38P. Doug has 3 exercise sessions on T2 between each data collection session, and there will be 4 collection sessions using each Harness (Glenn for T2, followed by the TVIS harness for TVIS).]

The crew completed today’s 2-hr. physical workout protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-6), TVIS treadmill (CDR/2x, FE-3/2x, FE-5), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (FE-2, FE-3, FE-4, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-2, FE-3, FE-4) and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-5). [T2 snubber arm inspection is no longer needed after the last T2 session of the day but is now regularly being done once a week after the last T2 session.]

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Astana, Kazakhstan (ISS had a nadir-viewing pass over this capital city. The city is located on the Ishim River in central Kazakhstan. Overlapping frames of the urban and surrounding rural area were requested), Hurricane Julia, Mid Atlantic Ocean (Dynamic Event. Hurricane Julia has reached Category 4 strength, and should have well-defined flow banding and an eye structure at the time of closest ISS approach. Looking to the left and ahead of track for the storm), Mississippi Delta Region (weather was predicted to remain clear over the western Mississippi-Atchafalaya River delta area. Overlapping mapping frames, taken along track, of the delta and stream channels will be useful for assessing potential ecosystem impacts from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill), and Middlesboro Impact Crater, KY (ISS had a nadir-viewing pass over this 6 km diameter impact structure. The crater is partially covered by the Middlesboro, KY urban area, but the crater rim can be perceived by vegetation patterns and topography to the east. Overlapping frames, taken along track as ISS approached and then passed over the target area were suggested to maximize potential for imaging the crater.)

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
————–Six-crew operations—————–
09/23/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing – 9:35pm/11:55pm EDT (End of Increment 24; Wheelock/CDR-25)
————–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
11/12/10 — Russian EVA-26
11/17/10 — Russian EVA-27
11/30/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
————–Three-crew operations————-
12/14/10 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/16/10 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
12/20/10 — Progress M-07M/39P undock
01/24/10 — Progress M-08M/40P undock
01/28/10 — Progress M-09M/41P launch
01/31/10 — Progress M-09M/41P docking
02/xx/10 — Russian EVA-28
02/26/11 — 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/xx/10 — Russian EVA-29
05/16/11 — Soyuz TMA-21/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/30/11 — 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
08/29/11 — 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-22/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/30/11 — Soyuz TMA-24/28S launch – D.Burbank (CDR-30)/A.Shkaplerov/A.Ivanishin
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 – O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit
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
03/14/12 — Soyuz TMA-24/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/26/12 — Soyuz TMA-26/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Valkov
03/28/12 — Soyuz TMA-26/30S docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
05/15/12 — Soyuz TMA-25/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
————–Three-crew operations————-
05/29/12 – Soyuz TMA-27/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
05/31/12 – Soyuz TMA-27/31S docking
————–Six-crew operations—————-
09/09/12 — Soyuz TMA-26/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
————–Three-crew operations————-
09/23/12 — Soyuz TMA-28/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O. Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
09/25/12 – Soyuz TMA-28/32S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
10/07/12 — Soyuz TMA-27/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
————–Three-crew operations————-
11/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-29/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
11/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-29/33S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-
03/xx/12 — Soyuz TMA-28/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
————–Three-crew operations————-
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-30/34S launch.
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-30/34S docking
————–Six-crew operations————-

SpaceRef staff editor.