Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 10 Jul 2003

By SpaceRef Editor
July 10, 2003
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All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except as noted previously or below.  

FE/SO Ed Lu completed the standard general MedOps periodic fitness evaluation (PFE), checking up on his blood pressure and electrocardiogram during programmed exercise on the CEVIS in the Lab.  Readings were taken with the BP/ECG (blood pressure/electrocardiograph), and his crewmate, CDR Yuri Malenchenko, assisted as CMO (crew medical officer).  [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.]

Malenchenko started his work day with another data take of the Russian MO-21 “Ecosfera” air sampler and incubation equipment, collecting air samples for atmospheric microbial analysis to monitor sanitary-hygiene status.  [MO-21 determines microbial contamination of the ISS atmosphere, specifically the total bacterial and fungal microflora counts and microflora composition according to morphologic criteria of microorganism colonies.]

Ed Lu recharged both batteries of the MedOps defibrillator equipment to full capacity.  [Each battery was left in for 3.5 hrs. and its open-circuit voltage tested with the volt/amp scopemeter, then removed and stowed again.  Nominally, the Defib has a battery installed at all times, but with this particular unit the PDIM (power data interface module) would overcharge the batteries.]

Yuri Malenchenko concluded his modification work on the Service Module (SM) condensate separation & pumping units (BRPK).  [After yesterday’s replacement of BRPK-2, today the BRPK units were to be upgraded with new pipe conduits without filters and with higher trip pressures for the safety valves (also new).  Purpose of this upgrade is to prevent unwanted fluid flow through the bypass line during condensate transfer cycles.]

Malenchenko then continued the latest maintenance cycle on the Russian segment (RS) ventilation system, today cleaning the protective mesh screens of the ventilation fans (TsV) and the removable screens of the three gas-liquid heat exchangers (GZhT) in the FGB (funktsionalnyi-grusovoi blok) air ventilation system, disposing of the old filters.  [Last time done: 6/6].

Yuri also attended to his regular daily inspection of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) experiment which studies growth and development of plants (peas) under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-2 greenhouse.

Ed Lu conducted another weekly inventory audit of the available CWCs (contingency water containers) and their contents, to keep track of onboard water supplies.  An updated CWC “cue card” was uplinked to support this weekly activity with an updated list of residual water resources remaining in the partially-filled CWCs.  [Last time done: 7/2]. 

The Science Officer performed the routine maintenance of SM life support systems (SOZh) and also prepared the daily inventory management system (IMS) “delta” file for updating the IMS database.

The crew conducted the regular bi-monthly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office (Kent Rominger).

Ed Lu had the second day for his recording of video scenes of a two-day onboard tour for the “Live on ISS” PAO TV program, started yesterday.  The footage will be edited by him on 7/11 (tomorrow) and downlinked on 7/17 (Thursday next week).  The downlink, with live crew narration, will be aired on NASA TV.  [Scenes of interest include an end-to-end station “fly-through”, starting from the Lab and ending at the SM, highlights of the Lab interior, the MSG (microgravity science glovebox), EarthKAM and TVIS treadmill, the Airlock and its spacesuits, if visible, the FGB and its stores, the Soyuz TMA-1 CRV, views of outside trusses, etc.]

At 12:25pm EDT, the two station residents were interviewed live on TV by Voice of America Television and Radio while floating in the “Destiny” Lab.  The 18-min. event touched on recent activities aboard ISS, operational impressions by the crew, and return-to-flight questions.

Both crewmembers conducted their regular daily physical exercise program of 2.5 hrs.

Ed Lu’s attempts yesterday at recovering the two SSC laptops #6071 & #6039 were not successful.  After running for a while, first with, then without battery, both PCs locked up again.  More troubleshooting by ground and crew ahead.

More success was had by the SO with the restoration of the SAMS ICU (space acceleration measurement system/interface control unit) laptop hard drive.  The problem was resolved and the unit is working nominally.

Malenchenko’s work on repairing the Russian laptop #1 was also successful.

The BMP harmful impurities filtration system in the SM is back in operation after the recent IFM.

EarthKAM operations are continuing on board, under remote commanding.

Moscow reported that the installation of the new 11P-delivered satellite navigation antenna system (ASN) in the SM by Yuri on 7/8 was successfully completed, as were two subsequent tests, conducted remotely from TsUP.   [Telemetry analysis is continuing at present.  Another set of tests is to begin on 7/14, to include several different operational modes and software alternatives in both the primary and backup system, to run for about two weeks.  If successful, the system will then be declared operational.  Using GLONASS satellites (the Russian equivalent of GPS), the new capability will allow state vector (SV) updates without using the ground (which up to now has to uplink daily SV updates) or requiring SV transfers from the USOS from time to time.  The ASN equipment was originally installed in the SM but was found faulty and had to be returned to the ground.  After repair it was shipped again to the station and re-installed.]

The degraded condition of the RS power supply situation continues and is being carefully monitored.  The replacement of the failed SM battery #4 is planned in the near future.

Tomorrow at 2:00pm EDT, the station will maneuver to YVV/”barbecue” attitude (vertical y-axis in velocity vector, i.e., facing forward) for six orbits, to allow gathering temperature and power data for the scheduled mid-Beta range analysis test.  Afterwards, flight attitude will return to XPOP.  [Projected power availability in YVV (autotrack): 24.1 kW from 2B & 4B combined.  XPOP (autotrack w/bias): 22.4 kW from both.]

MCC-H is watching a strong tropical storm coming in from the Caribbean which may later turn into a hurricane and could require shifting ISS Flight Control from Houston to Moscow.  A decision regarding such transfer of control, if required, will in all likelihood not have to be made before Monday morning (7/14).

Total propellants transferred on 7/4 from 11P/Progress to the ISS amounted to approximately 154 kg fuel (UDMH, unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine) and 187 kg oxidizer (NTO, nitrogen tetroxide).  Fuel/oxidizer quantities remaining in 11P are balanced, with about 27 liters of each remaining in the Progress tanks.

Another Robotics day with the SSRMS (space station remote manipulator system) is being planned for 7/15 (Tuesday).  [Objective will be some additional characterization of the SSRMS force moment sensor (FMS).  Data obtained through the FMS characterization so far have indicated that the FMS data fluctuates based on heating/cooling of the exposed EVA joint angle scale on the WR (wrist roll) joint, near the LEE/WR (latching end effector/WR) interface.  Data will be gathered during these operations to confirm this theory before work is begun to develop a thermal protection kit to cover this area.]

Today’s CEO targets, no longer limited in the current LVLH attitude and including the targets of the Lewis & Clark 200-year memorial locations, were Barcelona, Spain (looking for this rapidly growing coastal city on the “Spanish Riviera” just right of track), Tunis, Tunisia (this Tunisian capital and its harbor are on a large north-facing bay.  Looking just right of track as ISS approached the coast), Khartoum, Sudan (on this pass the crew had an excellent nadir view of the Sudanese capital.  It is located where the White Nile and Blue Nile Rivers join to form the Nile), Casablanca, Morocco (this famous Moroccan port city lay just right of track), Industrialized Southeastern Africa (as ISS tracked across extreme southwestern Africa, the crew was to look right of track in oblique views evidence of smog buildup over the industrialized Vaal and Orange River valleys of South Africa), Fort Mandan, ND (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: This is where the expedition spent the winter of 1804-5 and where Sacagawea and her husband joined the group.  The site is near the present town of Stanton.  Looking left of track and S of the large reservoir, Lake Sacagawea.  Stanton is on the W bank of the Missouri near where it turns sharply from S to E), Lower Amazon River Basin (ISS pass offered excellent nadir views in fair weather of the complex and dynamic islands of the Amazon estuaries.  Crew was asked to carefully map the location of small islands and bars in the river for change detection), The Dalles (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: A nice, oblique context view of this target was acquired last week.  Today the crew was to try for a nadir view of this southward arc in the Columbia just before it plunges through the green Cascade Range), Salt Lake City, Utah (the crew had a near-nadir pass for this target, looking for the city located on the southeastern shore of Great Salt Lake), and Nihoa (the crew had a nadir pass in fair weather over this small target, using the long lenses to capture details of the coral reef structures).
CEO images can be viewed at the websites

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at

Besides the daily CEO (crew earth observation) target list, the station residents were also provided with times of ISS equatorial night crossings for observing the current equatorial-tropical storm zone.

U.S. and Russian Segment Status (as of 1:15pm EST).

Environmental Control and Life Support (ECLSS) and Thermal Control (TCS):

  • Elektron O2 generator is powered On (16 amp mode).  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On (in Manual Mode 5/3).  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is Off.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is operating.  MCA (major constituents analyzer) is operating.  BMP Harmful Impurities unit: absorbent bed #1 in Purify mode, bed #2 in Purify mode (unit is On).  RS air conditioner SKV-1 is On; SKV-2 is Off.
  • SM Working Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 742; temperature (deg C) — 27.8; ppO2 (mmHg) — data invalid; ppCO2 (mmHg) — data invalid.
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 751; temperature (deg C) — 20.0.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 748; temperature (deg C) — n/a.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 740.07; temperature (deg C) — 23.1 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 742.09; temperature (deg C) — n/a; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):  Pressure (mmHg) — 742.19; temperature (deg C) — n/a; shell heater temp (deg C) — 23.7, ppO2 (mmHg) — 168.6; ppCO2 (mmHg) — 4.1.
  • PMA-1:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — 23.2
  • PMA-2:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — 20.9.

(n/a = data not available)

Propulsion System (PS):

  • Total propellant load available: 3803 kg (8384 lb) as of 6/26  [SM(774) + FGB(2447) + Progress M(182) +Progress M-1(400)].  (Capability: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Electrical Power Systems (EPS):

  • Both P6 channels fully operational.  BGA (beta gimbal assembly) 2B and 4B both in directed position (Blind/triple-angle mode, non solar-tracking, drag reduction)..
  • SM batteries:  Battery #4 is disconnected (failed 6/16); all other batteries (7) are in “Partial Charge” mode.  Batteries #1, #2 and #3 showing degraded capacity. 
  • FGB batteries:  Battery #3 is offline; battery #2 is in “Cycle” mode; all other batteries (4) are in “Partial Charge” mode.
  • Plasma Contactor Unit PCU-1 in Standby mode; PCU-2 in Standby mode.

Command & Data Handling Systems:

  • C&C-1 MDM is prime, C&C-2 is back-up, and C&C-3 is in standby.
  • GNC-1 MDM is prime; GNC-2 is Backup.
  • INT-1 is operating; INT-2 is Off.
  • EXT-2 is On (primary), EXT-1 is Off (both now upgraded to R3).
  • LA-1, LA-2 and LA-3 MDMs are all operating.
  • PL-2 MDM is Off; PL-1 MDM is Operational.
  • APS-1 (automated payload switch #1) and APS-2 are both On.
  • SM Terminal Computer (TVM): 3 redundant lanes (of 3) operational.
  • SM Central Computer (TsVM): 3 redundant lanes (of 3) operational.

Attitude Control Systems:

  • 3 CMGs on-line (CMG-1 failed).
  • State vector source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Attitude source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Angular rate source — RGA-1

Flight Attitude:

  • LVLH -YVV (local vertical/local horizontal = “earth-fixed”: z-axis in local vertical, -y-axis in velocity vector [yaw: -10 deg, pitch: -9.3 deg, roll: 0 deg]), with CMG/TA (thruster assist) Momentum Management.
  • Solar Beta angle:  33.7 deg (magnitude increasing).

Communications & Tracking Systems:

  • FGB MDM-1 is powered Off; FGB MDM-2 is operational.
  • All other Russian communications & tracking systems are nominal.
  • S-band is operating nominally (on string 2).
  • Ku-band is operating nominally.
  • Audio subsystem is operating nominally [IAC-1 (internal audio controller #1) being analyzed after self-test error.  IAC-2 is prime.]
  • Video subsystem operating nominally.
  • HCOR (high-rate communications outage recorder) is operating nominally.


  • SSRMS/Canadarm2 based at MBS PDGF #1 with Keep Alive (KA) power on both strings.
  • MBS: KA power on both strings. 
  • MT: latched and mated at WS4. 
  • POA: KA power on both strings.
  • RWS (robotics workstations): Lab RWS is On (DCP connected); Cupola RWS is Off.

ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 7:32am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 386.8 km
  • Apogee — 392.3 km
  • Perigee — 381.3 km
  • Period — 92.29 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0008124
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.60
  • Solar Beta Angle — 33.7 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 70 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 26448
  • For more on ISS orbit and worldwide naked-eye visibility dates/times, see

Did you know that…

…in steady-state momentum management with the CMGs (control moment gyros), the 400,000+ lb mass of ISS requires about 6 ft-lb of torque to maintain attitude control (the CMGs can produce almost 200 ft-lb)?  By way of comparison: a 4,500 lb Ford Explorer outputs over 250 ft-lb of torque, and a modern 1,400 lb Formula 1 car boasts more than 500 ft-lb.

SpaceRef staff editor.