Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 12 July 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
July 12, 2004
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 12 July 2004

SpaceRef note: This NASA Headquarters internal status report, as presented here, contains additional, original material produced by (copyright © 2004) to enhance access to related status reports and NASA activities.

All ISS systems continue to function nominally except those noted previously or below.  Underway: Week 11 of Increment 9. 

Before breakfast and physical exercise, the crewmembers performed their fifth session of the periodic Russian biomedical assessments PZEh-MO-8 (body mass measurement) and PZEh-MO-7 (calf volume measurement).  Padalka set up the MO-8 “scales” equipment and later broke it down and stowed it away.   [Calf measurements (left leg only) are taken with the IZOG device, a custom-sewn fabric cuff that fits over the calf, using the knee and lower foot as fixed reference points, to provide a rough index of deconditioning in zero-G and effectiveness of countermeasures.  For determining body mass in zero-G, where things are weightless (but not massless), the Russian IM “scales” measure the inertial forces that arise during the oscillatory motion of a mass driven by two helical metering springs with known spring constants.  By measuring the time period of each oscillation of the unknown mass (the crewmember) and comparing it to the period of a known mass, the crewmember’s mass is calculated by the computer and displayed].

Previous Reports

ISS On-orbit Status [HQ]
ISS Status [JSC]
Shuttle Processing [KSC]

Gennady Padalka performed his second round of the Russian MBI-8 “Profilaktika” (preventive health maintenance) fitness test series, today on the VELO stationary bike ergometer (last time done: 5/26).   [There will be two more tests, one with the NS-1 Load Trainer tomorrow, the other with the TVIS treadmill, plus blood analysis, on 7/14.  Test procedure is identical to the Russian MO-5 assessment, but in addition to the nominal procedure, it calls for the use of the TEEM-100M gas analyzer, measurement of the lactate level in the subject’s blood with the AccuSport device, and subjective evaluation of physical exertion levels during the test.  Results are entered on a log sheet.  TEEM and ECG (electrocardiograph) data are transferred to the payload laptop 3, also on a tape cassette (“Cardiocassette-2000”), and prepared for later downlink via Regul-Packet comm.  The lactate levels were called down to specialists standing by at TsUP.]

CDR Padalka worked extensively in the FGB (Funktsionalnyi-Grusovoi Blok), installing new cargo stowage containers behind two wall panels in zones 24A and 24B of the module, using plates, panels, C-clamps and covers with fasteners.

FE/SO Mike Fincke set up the EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle school students, EK) hardware for another run, this time in the Node (because of Lab window unavailability).   [The FE selected the SSC 1 (station support computer #1) laptop for the operation, connected it to the EK’s electronic still camera (ESC) and to the OpsLAN via Ethernet cable and activated the automated/remote-controlled process.  The payload will run without crew intervention until next Friday, 7/16.  EK is using a Kodak ESC 460C electronic still camera with 50mm (f/1.4) lens, now powered by 16Vdc from a 28 Vdc adapter, taking pictures by remote operation from the ground, without crew interaction.  It is available for students who submit image requests and conduct geographic research.  The requests are uplinked in a camera control file to the IBM 760XD SSC laptop which then activates the camera at specified times and receives the digital images from the camera’s storage card on its hard drive, for subsequent downlink via OpsLAN.]

Fincke also set up and conducted scheduled operations with the FMVM (Fluid Merging Viscosity Measurement) payload, after a familiarization period.  The experiment, which was discussed by crew and Principal Investigator (PI) on 7/9, is conducted in the MWA CS (Maintenance Work Area Containment System) in the Lab, a portable workbench with a tabletop that measures 36 by 25 inches.   [Understanding the viscosity of molten materials is important for everything from designing laboratory experiments to industrial production of materials.  One way to determine viscosity is to measure how long it takes two spheres of liquid to merge into a single spherical drop: on contact a neck will from between the two drops, increasing in thickness until the two drops become one single sphere.  On Earth, gravity distorts liquid spheres, and drops are too heavy to be supported by strings.  Drop distortion should not occur in the ISS’s microgravity environment, and the drops can be held on strings.  To verify this technique as an accurate viscosity measurement method, the FMVM experiment uses fluids with known viscosities: honey, corn syrup, glycerin and silicone oil.  Several runs were conducted — some with equal diameter drops and others with different size drops.  The crewmember releases two drops from a syringe onto strings and records digital images of the drops as they coalesce to form one drop.  The initial diameters of the drops will be measured.] 

The crew conducted the mandatory CHeCS (crew health care systems) emergency medical operations OBT (on-board training) drill, a one-hour U.S. training exercise designed to refresh crewmembers’ acuity in applying ACLS (advanced cardio life support) in an emergency.  [Deploying (without actually operating/manipulating) onboard equipment such as the RSP (respiratory support pack), CMRS (crew medical restraint system), ALSP (advanced life support pack) and defibrillator stowed in the Lab CHeCS (crew health care systems) rack, the station residents went step-by-step through the ACLS manual.  Objectives of the exercise include practicing communication and coordination necessary to perform medical emergency procedures, locating appropriate emergency medical components, and determining each crewmember’s individual method of CPR delivery in zero-G.  After the drill, Mike stowed the equipment]

Gennady performed routine IFM (in-flight maintenance) on the SRVK-2M condensate water processor, removing its multifiltration unit (BKO), which has reached its service life limit.  The old BKO was replaced with a new unit and stowed for deorbiting in Progress 14P.  [BKO contains five purification columns to rid the condensate of dissolved mineral and organic impurities and has a service lifetime of ~450 liters throughput.  The water needs to be purified for proper electrolysis in the Elektron O2 generator.]

Today it was Mike’s job to prepare the daily inventory management system (IMS) “delta” file for updating the database, perform the routine maintenance of SM life support systems (SOZh), and take care of the daily status checkup of autonomous Lab payloads (MAMS, PCG-STES010).

In the evening, the Science Officer is scheduled to tag up with payload developers of the Foam (Viscous Liquid Foam–Bulk Metallic Glass) experiment to discuss next “Saturday Science” program’s Foam payload activities (7/17).   [Bulk metallic glasses (BMGs) are a relatively new class of material with enormous potential, since solid foams are the best materials to make large, stiff structures with high strength-to-weight ratio and considerably reduced thermal conductivity of the metal allow, a highly desired trend.  A BMG is a viscous undercooled liquid alloy at temperatures above the glass transition.  On ISS, BMG will be foamed (with the soldering iron inside the MWA CS), in order to allow study of the foam microstructure formed in the absence of gravity-induced sedimentation and liquid drainage.]

TsUP/Moscow is preparing for the upload of the new software version SM 7.02, scheduled to begin on Wednesday (7/14).   [Activities on 7/14 will start with the transition of new 7.02 images for TsVM (Central Computer) and TVM (Terminal Computer) to the TsVM’s backup unit (KTsP2), followed by replacing Russian laptop 1 (LT1) with a new LT1 already loaded with 7.02 (brought up on 14P).  Next will be test activation of the LT1-to-KTsP1 linkage, restart of TVM and TsVM on the old software (7.01) and preparation of the U.S. segment for the Russian computer system (BVS) reloading with the software upgrade, scheduled for 7/15.  More transitions will then follow on 7/16 and 7/17.]
Update on EMU spacesuit troubleshooting:  As reported, cooling in EMUs 3005 & 3013 has failed because the water pump rotor in each suit appears to be seized, as established during the testing on 7/8.  The rotors are part of the “Item 123” fan/pump/separator assembly, which provides circulation of the ventilation and cooling fluids (oxygen & water) for the EMU, while also separating water from the water/gas mixture removed from both the ventilation and liquid cooling loops.  The pump rotor is driven by the electric motor through a magnetic clutch, while the O2 fan and separator are connected to the other end of the drive motor axle.  Two new rotors will be manifested on Progress 15P, but prior to their arrival the crew will spent several hours on additional troubleshooting to determine whether the rotors’ stoppage may not be caused by contamination jammed in the very small (0.004 inch) clearance between rotor and water pump housing.  This will be investigated by slightly loosening some fasteners around the pump.  If the rotors still won’t spin after this, the more invasive task of breaking open the pumps and inspecting their interior will be undertaken, followed if necessary by the replacement of the rotors of each “Item 123” fan/pump/separator assembly.

Update on ISS orbit:  Yesterday, the solar Beta angle reached its maximum of 73.5 deg and is now coming back down again.  As a consequence of the high Beta and the current flight attitude of LVLH YVV, there are no CEO (crew earth observations) targets with sun angles above 20 degrees.  As a further consequence of ISS attitude, the station’s daily orbital decay has been at its lowest (~20 m/day).  Orbital decay is a function of atmospheric density at the orbit altitude and the station’s cross-sectional (“frontal” or “ram”) area, which creates the drag.  Depending on attitude, ISS drag area can vary between a low of 390 square meters (where it is currently) and a high of 670 sq.m.

Update on Progress 15P:  Launch of 15P is currently expected for 8/11 (Wednesday) late in the evening.  Docking is scheduled to occur on 8/13 at ~9:05pm EDT.

Previous NASA ISS On-orbit Status Reports can be found here. Previous NASA Space Station Status Reports can be found here. Previous NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status Reports can be found here. A collection of all of these reports and other materials relating to Return to Flight for the Space Shuttle fleet can be found here.

CEO images can be viewed at these websites:

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at:

To view the latest photos taken by the expedition 9 crew visit:

U.S. & Russian Segment Status  (as of today, 12:50pm EDT)

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

  • Elektron O2 generator is On (16A, =lowest setting).  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On.  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is Off.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is operating.  SM Gas Analyzer has been calibrated and is used for ppO2 & ppCO2 monitoring.  MCA (major constituents analyzer) is in Life Extending Mode (LEM).  BMP Harmful Impurities unit: absorbent bed #1 in Purify mode, bed #2 in Purify mode.  RS air conditioner SKV-1 is On, SKV-2 is Off (SM panel mods completed 4/8; SKV-2 activation failed 4/20; is still considered failed).  SFOG slot #2 fan suspect (not usable).
  • SM Working Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 752; temperature (deg C) — 25.3; ppO2 (mmHg) — 170.8; ppCO2 (mmHg) — 3.2.
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 751; temperature (deg C) — 20.2.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 756; temperature (deg C) — 21.0.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 750.2; temperature (deg C) — 23.2 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 751.8; temperature (deg C) — 24.7; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):   Pressure (mmHg) — 751.9; temperature (deg C) — 25.9; shell heater temp (deg C) — n/a, ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • (n/a = data not available)

Electrical Power Systems (EPS):

  • Both P6 channels fully operational.  BGA (beta gimbal assembly) 2B and 4B both in directed position (Dual angle/”blind” mode, non solar-tracking, biased for drag reduction).
  • SM batteries:  Battery #2 is in “Cycle” mode; all other batteries (7) are on line in “Partial Charge” mode.  
  • FGB batteries:  Battery #4 is off line; all other batteries (5) are on line in “Partial Charge” mode.

Plasma Contactor Unit PCU-1 is in Standby mode; PCU-2 is in Standby mode.

Command & Data Handling Systems:

  • C&C-1 MDM is prime, C&C-2 is backup, and C&C-3 is in standby.
  • GNC-2 MDM is prime; GNC-1 is backup.
  • INT-2 is operating; INT-1 is Off.
  • EXT-1 is On (primary), EXT-2 is Off (backup).
  • LA-1, LA-2 and LA-3 MDMs are all operating.
  • PL-1 MDM is Off; PL-2 MDM is Operational.
  • APS-1 (automated payload switch #1) and APS-2 are both On.
  • SM Terminal Computer (TVM): 2 redundant lanes (of 3) operational (string 1 dropped out 11/22/03).
  • SM Central Computer (TsVM): 3 redundant lanes (of 3) operational.
  • FGB MDM-1 is Off (failed, 11/21/03); MDM-2 is Operational.

Propulsion System:

  • Total propellant load available: 3928 kg (8660 lb) as of 7/1/04;  [SM(552) + FGB(2772) + Progress M(639)].  (Capabilities: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Attitude Control Systems:

  • 3 CMGs on-line (CMG-1 failed, since 6/6/02; CMG-2’s RPC-17 failed 4/21/04; was replaced 6/30/04).
  • State vector source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Attitude source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Angular rate source — RGA-1

Flight Attitude:

  • LVLH XVV (local vertical/local horizontal = “earth-fixed”: z-axis in local vertical, x-axis in velocity vector [yaw: -10 deg, pitch: -9 deg, roll: 0 deg]), with CMG/TA (thruster assist) Momentum Management, until 6/28, following the EVA.

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 (may require a mask).
  • Audio subsystem is operating nominally (IAC-1 is prime, IAC-2 is off).
  • Video subsystem operating nominally.
  • HCOR (high-rate communications outage recorder) is operating nominally.


  • SSRMS/Canadarm2 based at Lab PDGF/LEE A, operational on redundant string, off on prime.
  • MBS: KA (keep alive) 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 Location NOW

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ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 6:41am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 359.8 km
  • Apogee height — 364.0 km
  • Perigee height — 355.7 km
  • Period — 91.7 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.6302 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0006178
  • Solar Beta Angle — 73.1 deg
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.70
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 40 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 32228

ISS Altitude History

Apogee height Mean AltitudePerigee height

ISS Altitude History

For more on ISS orbit and worldwide ISS naked-eye visibility dates/times, see In addition, information on International Space Station sighting opportunities can be found at on NASA’s Human Spaceflight website. The current location of the International Space Station can be found at at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. Additional satellite tracking resources can be found at

SpaceRef staff editor.