Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 August 2006

By SpaceRef Editor
August 17, 2006
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 17 August 2006

SpaceRef note: This NASA Headquarters internal status report, as presented here, contains additional, original material produced by (copyright © 2006) to enhance access to related status reports and NASA activities.

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.

After wakeup, CDR Vinogradov continued his daily support of the Russian/German TEKh-20 Plasma Crystal-3 Plus (PK-3+) science payload by again activating the PK-3+/N turbopump in the Service Module Transfer Compartment (SM PkhO), to maintain the vacuum inside the ZB work chamber. Tagging up with ground specialists at ~8:30am EDT, Pavel activated experiment hardware, recorded real-time video data and later terminated the experiment, performed closeout operations (clearing of vacuum chamber) and copied the accumulated data from the hard drive to the USB stick for subsequent downlink. The turbopump will be deactivated tonight at ~5:25pm EDT before crew sleep. [The experiment is performed on plasma, i.e., fine particles charged and excited by HF (high frequency) radio power inside the evacuated work chamber. Main objective is to study dust plasma crystallization processes at a specified power of HF discharge, pressure, and a varied number of particles with subsequent reduction of HF discharge power, then to observe melting of the structures formed earlier. Today’s sixth baseline experiment was conducted with 2.55 micron particles at different pressures and HF generator power outputs to provide a preliminary study of wave propagation.]

Processing Status
Daily Mission
Return to Flight
Weekly Status
Weekly Science
Daily On-Orbit Status
Daily Crew Timeline
Soyuz | Progress
ISS News | ATV

The CDR conducted his first stress test & saliva sampling of ESA’s “Immuno” experiment, using its Saliva-Immuno Kit. Another saliva sampling and the data entry in the questionnaire will follow tonight before sleep time, after which the hardware will be stowed. The accompanying MO-3 stress test was performed during Pavel’s physical exercise regimen. The second “Immuno” session will be scheduled at the end of the Increment. [Objective of the experiment is to investigate immune neuro-endocrine reactions in the space environment by studying samples of saliva, blood and urine using collection kits and the biomedical (MBI) protection kit along with a stress-test questionnaire filled out by the subject.]

FE-1 Williams performed maintenance on the Russian SRV-K2 water processing system in the Service Module (SM), replacing three hoses (Kl-K26, Kl1-A3, Kl3-A3) with new spares and discarding the old ones as trash.

Vinogradov conducted the scheduled outfitting on the RS TCS (Russian Segment/Thermal Control System) by applying new Progress-delivered noise suppression material to the SKV1 & SKV2 air conditioners in the SM. [The work focused on installation of sound dampers in the mountings of the VR and VTK1 fans of SKV1 and a special vibration isolator on the VT2 ventilator of SKV2.].

To assess the efficacy of the new noise suppression equipment, FE-1 Williams used the SM SLM (Sound Level Meter) to take acoustic readings before the installation of the dampers and vibration isolator on the SKV air conditioners by the CDR. The recordings were then transferred to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) for subsequent downlink.

Jeff Williams performed troubleshooting on the ALTEA (Anomalous Long-Term Effects on Astronauts) by severing and insulating the power cable to the failed DAU (Data Acquisition Unit) fan. The experiment was then activated in the unmanned dosimeter (DOSI) mode, which currently is operating nominally. [Besides Jeff Williams’ aborted CNSM (Central Nervous System Monitoring) measuring sessions, the ALTEA protocol also calls for long-term unmanned real-time particle flux dosimetry inside the ISS, currently underway. ALTEA uses six particle detectors (originally introduced on Mir), a 32-channel EEG (Electroencephalograph) system, a visual stimulator and a pushbutton. These devices can be used separately or in any combination, permitting several different experiments: in physics, dosimetry, psychophysics, electrophysiology and cognitive neurophysiology.]

Williams also set up the video equipment for the scheduled DAFT (Dust & Aerosol Measurement Feasibility Test) session but discovered a broken HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter on the Fill Assembly. Today’s DAFT operations were cancelled. [Two DAFT runs are scheduled for next week, and specialists are assessing the impact. DAFT should test the effectiveness of an ultra-fine particle counter device called P-Trak, a commercial hand-held air quality monitor that counts ultra-fine dust particles, in a low gravity environment. A risk mitigation activity as a precursor to the next generation of spacecraft fire detection hardware, DAFT will provide the first systematic measurements of the sizes of particles in the ISS cabin air over time and prove the usefulness of the P-Trak counter. For the current testing session Jeff will create a “known” aerosol in a valved Mylar bag from gaseous nitrogen (GN2) and Arizona Road Dust (ARD).]

FE-2 continued the current round of the monthly preventive maintenance of RS ventilation systems, working in the FGB (Funktsionalnyi-Grusovoi Blok) to clean the screen guards (grilles) of the TsV1 & TsV2 fans.

After his recent structural alteration work on Panel 236 in the SM and subsequent routing of power and data cables, Pavel Vinogradov today installed the SSC3 (Station Support Computer 3) laptop in the port crew cabin. [SSC3 reload procedures were uplinked overnight.]

The CDR also collected the weekly cabin air readings with the GANK-4M Real-Time Harmful Contaminant Gas Analyzer system of the SM SOGS (Pressure Control & Atmospheric Monitoring System). [GANK tests for Methane (CH4), Ammonia (NH3), Carbon Monoxide (CO), Formaldehyde (HCHO), Nitrogen Oxides (NO, NO2), Hydrogen Chloride (HCl), Hydrogen Fluoride (HF), and Hydrogen Cyanide (HCN).]

Afterwards, Pavel replaced the O2 sensor of the IK0501 gas analyzer (GA) of the SM SOGS (Pressure Control & Atmospheric Monitoring System) and purged the unit via its BKGA calibration assembly to vacuum. [After the removal & replacement of the IK0501 signal converter (EP1003) on 8/14, the GA indicated offnominal ppO2 readings, reducing onboard capability to monitor partial pressures of O2, H2O, H2 and CO2 in the RS. Awaiting results.]

The FE-1 completed the regular weekly audit/inventory of the available CWCs (Contingency Water Containers) and their contents, to keep track of onboard water supplies.

Jeffrey also restored the onboard video configuration in the Lab by disconnecting the UOP DCP (Utility Outlet Panel/Display & Control Panel) bypass power cable from the Lab Robotics Work Station (RWS). [Yesterday’s SSRMS operations went well. The checkout of the SSRMS LEE B snares revealed the snares appear to be in the grooves, ready for 12A.]

In the US Airlock (A/L), Thomas Reiter terminated the regeneration process on the METOX (Metal Oxide) CO2 removal canisters initiated yesterday after the METOX performance testing. [During the previous Campout SDTO (Station Development Test Objective), CO2 dropped at a faster rate than expected (at 1.5 mm Hg per hour instead of the expected 1.0 mm Hg). Yesterday’s health inspection of the diverter valve of the A/L’s CO2 removal receptacle showed that it moves freely, closes well, and that there is negligible flow when closed.]

Thomas also terminated the regular processing of KAV condensate water for the Elektron oxygen generator started yesterday, which used US-collected water from CWC (Contingency Water Container) #1057 via the electric condensate pumping unit (BPK) of the Russian water processing system (SRV-K2).

Williams conducted a checkout of the IWIS (Internal Wireless Instrumentation System) accelerometer unit in the Node and its connection with its RSU (Remote Sensing Unit), which were originally installed by Expedition 1. This is in preparation for the installation of IWIS in the FGB, scheduled for tomorrow (8/18).

In addition, the Science Officer performed the scheduled lens change on the EarthKAM system at the Lab science window, going from 50mm to the 180mm-lens configuration. The lens change had to be performed while EarthKAM was not taking pictures. [EarthKAM was activated on 8/14. The payload runs without crew intervention through Saturday. EK is using a Kodak ESC 460C electronic still camera with 50mm and 180mm lenses, 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.]

In the SM, the FE-2 completed the routine daily maintenance of the SOZh environment control & life support system (ECLSS), including the ASU toilet facilities systems/replaceables and also updated/edited the standard IMS (Inventory Management System) “delta file”, including locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

In support of today’s IMMUNO protocol, CDR Vinogradov performed a scheduled MO-3 PFE (Physical Fitness Evaluation) session with a special 1.5-hr. workout on the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization) under 55-kg. harness/bungee-applied loading.

All crewmembers completed their regular 2.5-hr. physical exercise program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (FE-1), TVIS treadmill (CDR), RED resistive exerciser (FE-1, FE-2), and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (CDR, FE-2). [Pavel Vinogradov’s daily protocol prescribes a strict four-day microcycle exercise with 1.5 hr on the treadmill in unmotorized mode and one hour on VELO plus load trainer (today: Day 4 of the first set).]

Afterwards, Williams transfers his, Pavel’s and Thomas’ exercise data files to the MEC for downlink, as well as the daily wristband HRM data of the workouts on RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

At ~2:00pm EDT, the crew is scheduled for a 15-min. teleconference with ground specialists on the RPM (R-Bar Pitch Maneuver) training for 12A. [The actual RPM photography has been assigned to Jeff Williams, but the training involves the entire crew to provide operator backup/standby if required.]

At ~9:05am, FE-1/SO Williams supported an interactive televised PAO/educational event with students of Wright Middle School for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee, Nashville, TN. [VIPs in attendance at the event included U.S. Representatives Jim Cooper and Marsha Blackburn, U.S. Senator Bill Frisk, Nashville’s Mayor Bill Purcell and U.S. Senate Candidate Bob Corker.]

Later, at ~3:00pm, the crew is scheduled to downlink congratulatory TV salutations to TsUP/Moscow for the 60th Anniversary of RSC-Energia, and a special message of greetings by Thomas Reiter to the German Federal state of Nordrhein Westfalen (NRW) which is also celebrating its 60th anniversary (on August 23). [On this occasion, NRW’s Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) television will broadcast a ceremonial act, including Reiter’s prerecorded downlink, from the NRW capital of Düsseldorf with high political participation (Germany’s President Horst Köhler and NRW Prime Minister Jürgen Rüttgers.)]

As part of his daily evening work preps for the next day, Pavel Vinogradov is currently required to synchronize time between the Russian payload server (BSPN) and the ISS “Wiener” power laptop in support of the ongoing runs of the ESA/German commercial experiment “RokvISS”.

Working off his discretionary “time permitting” task list, the CDR completed the daily status check of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) Lada-8 experiment as well as photographic imagery of the experiment using the Nikon D1X digital camera with flash and copying all photos from the memory card to the RSK1 laptop for downlink to TsUP via the BSR-TM telemetry channel. [Rasteniya researches growth and development of plants (peas) under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-8 greenhouse. The regular maintenance of the experiment (each Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday) involves monitoring of seedling growth, humidity measurements, moistening of the substrate if necessary, topping off the water tank if ~20-25% of the total amount (4 liters) remains, and photo/video recording.]

Thomas and Jeff were thanked for yesterday’s work on EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System) installation. Remaining tasks were QD (quick disconnect) connector caps removal and cable installation..

Results of the recent (8/15) Russian Vozdukh efficiency test show the CO2 scrubber’s performance to be within specifications. [The test was conducted to check on the Vozdukh’s capability with three crewmembers.]

Today’s CEO (crew earth observations) photo targets, in the current LVLH attitude no longer limited by flight rule constraints on the use of the Lab nadir/science window, were Acraman Impact Crater, Southern Australia (this crater is relatively large [90 km in diameter] and is filled by Lake Acraman. Looking to the left of track for a roughly circular lake located in a valley of the Gawler Ranges of southern Australia), and Drakensberg Mountains, South Africa (Dynamic Event. Another unusual storm system has left fresh snow on the Drakensberg Mountains of South Africa. Looking to the right of track as ISS approached the southern tip of Africa. The station tracked parallel to the mountains; this should have allowed for mapping frames along the length of the range).

To date, more than 198,000 of CEO images have been taken in the first five years of the ISS, almost one third of the total number of images taken from orbit by astronauts.

CEO photography can be viewed and studied at the websites:

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at:

To view the latest photos taken by the expedition 13 crew visit:

Expedition 13 Flight Crew Plans can be found at

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.

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:57am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 340.3 km
  • Apogee height– 345.2 km
  • Perigee height — 335.4 km
  • Period — 91.34 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0007278
  • Solar Beta Angle — 64.8 deg (magnitude decreasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.76
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 23 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 44283

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern and subject to change):

  • 08/27/07 — STS-115/12A launch (4:29:55pm EDT)
  • 08/29-09/04 — STS-115/12A docked mission w/ISS (earliest) – P3/P4 trusses
  • 08/31/06 — Pavel Vinogradov’s birthday
  • 09/07/06 – STS-115/12A landing at KSC (~12:02pm EDT)
  • 09/14/06 — Soyuz TMA-9/13S launch (Expedition 14 + VC11)
  • 09/15/06 — Progress M-56/21P undocking (SM aft port) & reentry
  • 09/16/06 — Soyuz TMA-9/13S docking (SM aft port)
  • 09/25/06 — Soyuz TMA-8/12S undocking (FGB nadir port) & land
  • 10/08/06 — Soyuz TMA-9/13S relocation (SM aft port to FGB nadir port)
  • 10/18/06 — Progress M-58/23P launch
  • 10/20/06 — Progress M-58/23P docking (SM aft port)
  • 10/31/06 — Russian EVA-17
  • 12/14/06 — STS-116/12A.1 launch
  • 12/16-23/06 — STS-116/12A.1 docked mission w/ISS – P5 truss
  • 12/19/06 — Progress M-57/22P undocking (DC1) & reentry12/20/06 — Progress M-59/24P launch
  • 12/22/06 — Progress M-59/24P docking (DC1)
  • 01/22/07 — US EVA-6
  • 01/26/07 — US EVA-7
  • 01/31/07 — US EVA-8
  • 02/06/07 — Progress M-59/24P undocking (DC1) & reentry
  • 02/07/07 — Progress M-60/25P launch
  • 02/09/07 — Progress M-60/25P docking (DC1)
  • 02/22/07 — STS-117/13A launch – S3/S4 trusses
  • 02/24-03/03/07 — STS-117/13A docked mission w/ISS (earliest)
  • 03/08/07 — Progress M-58/23P undocking (SM aft port) & reentry
  • 03/09/07 — Soyuz TMA-10/14S launch (Expedition 15 + VC12)
  • 03/11/07 — Soyuz TMA-10/14S docking (SM aft port)
  • 03/19/07 — Soyuz TMA-9/13S undocking (FGB nadir port)
  • ??/??/07 — Soyuz TMA-10/14S relocation (SM aft port to FGB nadir port)
  • 06/11/07 — STS-118/13A.1

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 on NASA’s Human Spaceflight website. Additional satellite tracking resources can be found at

SpaceRef staff editor.