Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 12 June 2003

By SpaceRef Editor
June 12, 2003
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 12 June 2003

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except as noted previously or below.  Today our partners celebrate Russian Independence Day and the crew’ had a light schedule.  Congratulations,Yuri, prasnikom!

Yuri Malenchenko and Ed Lu completed post-docking deconfiguring the onboard TV/Ku-band connections.

At 4:30am EDT CDR Yuri Malenchenko downlinked a congratulatory TV message to the Baikonur police chief in the occasion of his birthday.  The downlink was initiated during a Russian comm pass by the SPP automated daily timeline system.

During the same pass, the crew also sent down a congratulatory message to veteran cosmonauts Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova and Valery Fedorovich Bykovsky on the occasion of the 40th anniversary (on 6/19) of their concurrent (twin) flights of two spaceships, Vostok 5 and Vostok 6.  [“Valentina Vladimirovna, your historic flight in June 1963 inaugurated an era of women in space; it was an important achievement for Russian and international cosmonautics and was one of the key events of the century.  Since your flight, over 40 women from Russia, the USA, Great Britain, France, Canada, and Japan have been to space.  Valery Fedorovich, your flight lasted four days, 23 hours, 6 minutes and remains the longest flight in a single-man space vehicle. We, the crew of the roomy International Space Station, have a sense of deep respect for your record flight in a small vehicle.”]

Malenchenko performed his regular daily inspection of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) experiment which researches growth and development of plants under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-2 greenhouse.  Later, he transferred the accumulated data files to a floppy disk for storage, and took digital photos of the plants.  [The experimental seeds of two types of peas (a flagellate variety with reds flowers, up to 27 cm high, and an acacia-leaf variety with white flowers ,up to 20 cm high) are planted between wicks in a root tray, with environmental control powered on.  Regular daily maintenance of the experiment involves monitoring of seedling growth, humidity measurements, moistening of the substrate if necessary, and photo/video recording.]

Later, Yuri completed the daily routine maintenance of the SM’s SOZh environment control & life support system as well as the daily preparation of the IMS inventory “delta” file.

The CDR also is scheduled to perform another routine replacement of the separator unit of the BRPK-2 air/liquid condensate separator system in a 40-min “plumbing” operation.  The old unit is to be discarded.

Working from the Russian discretionary task list, Malenchenko conducted another session of the Russian Uragan (“hurricane”) earth imaging program (GFI-8), using the Kodak DCS 760 digital camera with f/800 focal length lens.  [Suggested targets included Caspian Sea, Aral Sea, city of Semipalatinsk, city of Ustj-Kamonogorsk, Altai mountains, and city of Chita.]

At 1:55pm EDT, both crewmembers are to participate in a 20-min. live TV downlink in support of an educational/PAO event with Bradley University in Peoria, IL, attended by primary/middle school students from the University’s Institute for Gifted and Talented Youth.  A list of student’ questions was uplinked to the crew beforehand.  The event is on NASA TV.  [The in-flight educational program  offers a diverse group of 1,000 elementary and middle school students the opportunity to learn more about the U.S. space program.  Throughout the four-week program students and educators will study space exploration, while paying special attention to state educational goals.  Both university pre-service and practicing classroom teachers will have the opportunity to engage in special professional development activities focused on space science education.  The Gifted and Talented Youth Program, hosted by the Bradley University College of Education and Health Sciences, impacts a broad spectrum of educators and students by introducing new resources for learning and teaching about space and its related subjects.]

Ed Lu was also to conducted an amateur radio exchange with a ham radio fan group from several schools in the Lively District Secondary School in Ontario, Canada, which will also be aired in a live web cast.

The crew completed their regular daily physical exercise program of 2.5 hrs. each.

At 7:27am EDT, the station maneuvered from earth-fixed LVLH back to sun-oriented XPOP (x-axis perpendicular to orbit plane).

Today’s CEO (crew earth observation) targets, no longer limited in the current LVLH attitude and including the targets of the Lewis & Clark 200-year memorial locations, were Lahore, Pakistan (the ISS pass was early enough in the day that the crew may have missed the increased daytime cloudiness of this region. The Pakistani capital lied just right of track), Western Mediterranean Dust and Smog (with a high pressure area building over the western Med and light winds, the crew was to look for aerosol buildup to continue. On this pass, as ISS crossed the Algerian coast, the crew was to look left of track towards eastern Spain and southern France in oblique views to detect the thickness and extent of the haze layer), Eastern Mediterranean Dust and Smog (tracking across northern Italy and looking left towards the Po River Valley for smog layers banked against the Alps), Lake Poopo (good context views of the Altiplano Basin including Lake Poopo and the nearby salars lied to the left of track), and Lower Columbia River (LEWIS & CLARK SITE(S): Given the present XPOP attitude, crew was to try for context views, left or right of track for several sites of interest including: Cascade Locks, The Dalles, Cayuse, and Pomeroy, Washington, near the western end of the historical expedition, 200 years ago).
CEO images can be viewed at the websites
See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at

SpaceRef staff editor.