Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 15 October 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
October 17, 2004
Filed under , , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 15 October 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.

Soyuz TMA-5 (9S) with Expedition 10 crewmembers Leroy Chiao and Salizhan Sharipov plus VC7 FE Yuri Shargin continues to catch up with the station for the docking tomorrow morning at 12:17am EDT (7:17am DMT/Moscow) [NEW TIME! ].  TsUP/Moscow reports that the spacecraft is looking good, with no issues; the third maneuver burn (DV-3) occurred this morning at the planned time (12:01am EDT).   [FD2 activities, starting yesterday in the late afternoon, included systems & crew health status reports to TsUP, preparation of the Soyuz Orbital Module (BO) for the subsequent rotational (RUO-2) & translational (RUD-2) hand controller checkouts over RGS (Russian ground sites), building attitude for and executing the DV3 burn, placing Soyuz back in its sun-spinning “barbecue” attitude (ISK) and swapping CO2 absorption cartridges in the BO.  Currently, the 9S crew is in their second sleep period.  After 2-3 additional adjustment burns during automated rendezvous (starting at 9:52pm) and activation of the active Kurs-A system on Soyuz (10:38pm) as well as the passive Kurs-P on the SM (10:40pm), station fly-around to align with the DC1 port will begin at ~11:50pm, followed by station keeping at ~11:59pm.  Final approach, initiated at 12:08am, will be concluded by docking and Soyuz hooks closure, at which time the ISS maneuvers from temporary free drift to earth-“fixed” LVLH TEA (local vertical/local horizontal torque equilibrium attitude), reverting to U.S. CMG control.  Because of tonight’s launch of a Proton carrier (with the AMC-15 commercial comsat) at ~5:23pm EDT from Baikonur, docking was moved over the Shelkovo RGS, i.e., ~8 minutes earlier than originally planned and coincidental with orbital sunrise.  To provide the Soyuz crew with situational awareness during the preceding flyaround and stationkeeping in darkness, NASA has agreed to activate three external lights on the USOS (U.S. segment) and SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System), to be turned off immediately after sunrise (12:08am).]

Aboard the ISS, the crew had a relatively short workday due to the sleep cycle shift necessitated by the 04:17 GMT arrival of 9S.  Padalka and Fincke will begin their sleep period at 3:30pm EDT, i.e., 1h 40m earlier than usual, and will wake up tonight at 8:20pm (5h 40m earlier than usual) for final preparations.

Soyuz Crew: ‘Phone Home’
“Soyuz crews have been provided with a Iridium/Motorola-9505 satellite phone and a Garmin GPSMAP 76 handheld GPS unit. Both units have the ability to function anywhere on Earth.”

For the last time before the 10/23 departure of 8S, CDR Padalka performed the monthly recharging of the Motorola-9505 Iridium satellite phone, which has become standard equipment on Soyuz DMs (descent modules).  Gennady retrieved the phone kit it from its location in the Soyuz TMA-4 DM and started the charging of its lithium-ion battery.   [For safety, before powering up the recharge unit, the telephone was put into a single CTB (crew transfer bag), which then was placed inside a triple CTB.  As has become regular safety practice, Gennady performed an inspection on the two CTBs to ensure their integrity (internal damage to CTB zippers tested for Iridium battery recharging on the ground had allowed an intentionally triggered fire to penetrate through the zippers).  The charging was monitored every 30 minutes without taking the satphone out of the containment.  Upon completion (~6:00am EDT), Padalka removed the phone, placed it inside its SSSP Iridium kit and stowed it back in the DM’s operational data files (ODF) container.]

FE/SO Fincke collected the previously (10/13) deployed passive U.S. FMK (formaldehyde monitoring kit) sampling badges from the Lab and SM for packing and return to Earth.

Gennady completed the daily routine maintenance of the SM’s SOZh life support system (including ASU toilet facilities), while Mike attended to the regular routine status checkup of the autonomous PCG-STES010 (Protein Crystal Growth-Single Locker Thermal Enclosure System) payload in the Lab (done every Monday, Wednesday and Friday).

Fincke also filled out the FFQ (food frequency questionnaire) again, which keeps a close-to-regular weekly log of his nutritional intake over time on special MEC (medical equipment computer) software.

With the treadmill’s gyroscope fully restored to nominal function, the crew completed their pre-return aerobic/anaerobic workout regime on TVIS and RED exerciser.

Previous Reports

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

The CDR conducted a test/checkout of VHF/radio communications preparatory for the upcoming teleconference (on 10/18) with the Governor of the Russian Province of Saratov.   [The city of Engels in Saratov Oblast is the hometown of VC7 Yuri Shargin, the third member of the 9S crew (born March 1960).  Engels also became a part of Russian cosmonautics history when on April 12, 1961, Yuri Gagarin landed on his parachute on a farm field nearby, after ejecting from the Vostok-1 capsule at 7 km altitude in concluding his 100-min. orbit flight as the worlds first human in space.  Today called Gagarin Field, the landing site each year attracts a growing number of visitors on this holiday.  It is located about 1500 km west of Baikonur’s longitude (then called Tyuratam), i.e., geographically speaking Yuri’s orbit was not completely closed.]

Yesterday, the FE changed out both the BBA (baseplate ballast assembly) and LHA (lamp housing assembly) in the Node overhead/port 4 location.  The BBA was considered failed, so Mike scavenged a good BBA from a location with a failed RPC (remote power controller).  The crew reported the LHA as severely degraded and disposed of it on 8S.  The replacement LHA was the fourth of the four LHA spares launched on Progress 15P.

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.

In preparation for 9S, the crew was uplinked a detailed overview/listing of 9S payload/experiment hazards.   [Payload safety reviewers distinguish between standard hazards and unique hazards, in the two categories of Biosafety and Toxicity.  There are four defined Biosafety levels, 1 thru 4 (of which levels 3 & 4 are not permitted on board), and five Toxicity levels, zero to 4.  Before experiments are approved for operation, they must be carefully reviewed and certified by teams of payloads safety experts from both sides.]

Today’s CEO (crew earth observation) photo targets, in the current XPOP attitude limited by flight rule constraints for use of the Science Window, which is only available for use for ~1/4 of each orbit when it is in trail (not facing into “ram” direction), were Lake Nasser, Toshka Lakes, Egypt (this pass provided an opportunity for high resolution oblique photography of the Lakes.  These images provide context for nadir photography and allow for monitoring of changes in lake level and shoreline positions), and Dust Plume, W. Africa (Dynamic Event.  Significant dust continues to move westward off of Africa across the Atlantic Ocean. Looking right of track towards Cape Verde for the dust plume).

ISS Location NOW

Full Size/Update
Real Time ISS TrackerMore Links

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:

Expedition 9 Flight Crew Plans can be found at

Note:  This was the last CEO assignment for the Expedition 9 crew.

Ahead for Soyuz 9S:

  • Start ISS Flyaround — 10/15 (Fri), ~11:50pm EDT; range ~405m;
  • Start Stationkeeping — 10/15, 11:59pm; range ~160m, below;
  • Final Approach — 10/16 (Sat), 12:08am;
  • Docking at DC1 –10/16, 12:17am;
  • Hatch open — ~3:25am.

Ahead for Soyuz 8S:

  • Hatch close — 10/23 (Sat), ~2:00pm;
  • Undocking from FGB — ~5:05pm;
  • Entry burn — ~7:40pm;
  • Landing — ~8:32pm.

 U.S. & Russian Segment Status  (as of today, 1:33pm EDT)

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

  • Elektron O2 generator is Off.  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On.  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is in Standby mode.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is On.  SM Gas Analyzer has been calibrated and is used for ppO2 & ppCO2 monitoring.  MCA (major constituents analyzer) is On.  BMP Harmful Impurities unit: absorbent bed #1 in Purify mode, bed #2 in Purify mode.  RS air conditioner SKV-1 is Off.  SKV-2 is On (SM panel mods completed 4/8; SKV-2 activation failed 4/20; new replaceable condensate removal line installed on 9/9).  SFOG slot #2 fan suspect (not usable).
  • SM Working Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 763; temperature (deg C) — 26.5; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 761; temperature (deg C) — 20.7.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 772; temperature (deg C) — 24.0.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 763.0; temperature (deg C) — 23.9 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 764.7; temperature (deg C) — 23.0; ppO2 (mmHg) — 175.2; ppCO2 (mmHg) — 3.8.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):   Pressure (mmHg) — 764.9; temperature (deg C) — 26.6; shell heater temp (deg C) — n/a, ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • (n/a = data not available.  ppO2 & ppCO2 readings from MCA)


Electrical Power Systems (EPS):

  • Both P6 channels fully operational.  BGA (beta gimbal assembly) 2B and 4B both in Autotrack mode (suntracking), biased to 42.5 deg (2B) and -42.5 deg (4B) for drag reduction.
  • SM batteries:  All batteries (8) are on line in “Partial Charge” mode.  
  • FGB batteries:  Battery #6 is off line; battery #5 is in “Cycle” mode; all other batteries (4) 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&DH)

  • C&C-1 MDM is failed, C&C-2 is prime, and C&C-3 is backup.
  • GNC-1 MDM (vers. R4) is prime; GNC-2 (vers. R4) 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): 3 redundant lanes (of 3) operational.
  • 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 (PS):

  • Total propellant load available: 4083 kg (9001 lb) as of 10/7/04;  [SM(552) + FGB(3531) + Progress M(0)].  (Capabilities: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Attitude Control Systems (ACS) :

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

Flight Attitude:

  • XPOP (x-axis perpendicular to orbit plane = sun-fixed [yaw: 0..5 deg, pitch: -9.0 deg., roll: 0 deg]), with CMG TA (thruster assist) until 9S docking on 10/16.

Communications & Tracking Systems (C&T):

  • 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 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

Full Size/Update
Real Time ISS TrackerMore Links

ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 7:40am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 361.5 km
  • Apogee height — 367.8 km
  • Perigee height — 355.2 km
  • Period — 91.77 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0009384
  • Solar Beta Angle — -44.8 deg (magnitude decreasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.69
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 100 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 33721


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.