Status Report

NASA Space Station On-orbit Status 11 Apr 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
April 11, 2004
Filed under , , ,
NASA Space Station On-orbit Status 11 Apr 2004

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously. The ISS crew is enjoying a quiet Easter Sunday (which happens to coincide this year for Russia and the West).  Happy Easter Sunday, Mike and Sasha!

At 5:20am EDT, while ISS passed over Russia on Daily Orbit 2, FE Alexander Kaleri had the by now traditional VHF/audio Easter audience with Alexij II, Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Earlier, on DO 1 (2:35am), the crew downlinked special greetings for tomorrow, Cosmonautics Day, to the RSC Energia’s security service, with personal wishes to the Corporation’s Vice-President and Manager of this department, to be included in a documentary for RSC-E.   [“Dear Nikolai Ivanovich, we highly appreciate your dedication, focus, and integrity in your actions, your managerial skills in a complex security environment.  We all remember instances when your personal support played a decisive role in solving complicated and seemingly unsolvable issues.  Expedition 8 crew on the International Space Station wishes you good health and new achievements!”]

Kaleri performed his regular monitoring/servicing of the Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) zero-G plant growth experiment, checking water level in the Lada-4 greenhouse water container and seed status.

Sasha also attended to the daily routine maintenance of the SOZh environmental control & life support systems in the Service Module (SM).  Today, this included the weekly collection of SP toilet flush counter and SVO water supply readings for calldown to TsUP.

CDR/SO Mike Foale and Alex Kaleri worked out on their regular daily physical exercise program of 2.5 hrs on TVIS treadmill and RED exerciser.

The replacement of the second GLA (General Luminaire Assemblies) lighting unit in the Node with a unit scavenged from another location in the Node (behind the starboard hatch) was on Foale’s “job jar” task list for this weekend (see yesterday’s status report).

Today’s optional CEO targets, limited in XPOP attitude by flight rule constraints on the use of the science window, which is available for only ~1/4 of each orbit when not facing forward (in “ram”), were Baghdad, Iraq (excellent weather and lighting were expected for this pass.  Trying to capture the entire Iraqi capital in a single frame), Aral Sea (if the weather held as expected for this first pass the crew should have had good oblique views of the Aral to the left of track.  On the second pass, they were to try for oblique views to the right of track), Istanbul, Turkey (ISS had a nadir view of this crossroads city, astride the Bosporus), Los Angeles, California (coastal fog may still have been a problem at the time of this pass, but otherwise the crew had a good nadir view in broad daylight), Las Vegas, Nevada (Viva Las Vegas! in a nadir view this pass), Red River Valley Flooding (DYNAMIC EVENT: Weather remains marginal as seasonal flooding continues in this region.  ISS pass was to the N and E, so the crew was advised to look right of track for possible sun glint enhancement of the standing water), and Canadian Rockies Snow Cover (DYNAMIC EVENT: With unusually fair weather holding over the Pacific Northwest, the crew was asked to take advantage of this opportunity to document this season’s snow pack on the Canadian Rockies).

CEO images can be viewed at the websites.

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at

ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 8:32am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 364.2 km
  • Apogee — 371.5 km
  • Perigee — 356.9 km
  • Period — 91.83 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0010802
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.68
  • Mean altitude loss last 24 hours — 100 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 30785

For more on ISS orbit and worldwide ISS naked-eye visibility dates/times, see

SpaceRef staff editor.