Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 18 August 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
August 18, 2004
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 18 August 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.

CDR Padalka conducted his third session with the cardio experiment PZEh MO-1 (Study of the Bioelectric Activity of the Heart at Rest), with Fincke assisting as CMO.   [During the 30-min. test, the crew tagged up with ground specialists on a Russian ground site (RGS) pass on Daily Orbit 5 (4:14am EDT) and downlinked data from the Gamma-1M ECG (electrocardiograph) for about 5-6 minutes.]

Afterwards, Gennady performed his regular inspection of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) experiment which researches growth and development of plants under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-5 greenhouse.   [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.]

The crew again had several hours set aside for unloading and inventorying of Progress 15P cargo, most of which had already been completed by last night.   [In logging individual cargo transfers in the IMS (inventory management system), the crew made particular note of the location of items intended for Expedition 10.]

In the SM, the CDR worked on the BMP harmful impurities filtration system, starting the periodic regeneration cycle on absorbent bed #2.   [This task had to wait until today because of yesterday’s deactivation of the unit.  The “baking-out” of the filter beds is repeated every 20 days.  Each bakeout to space vacuum takes about 24 hours.]

Both crewmembers in turn took their fourth periodic On-Orbit Hearing Assessment (O-OHA) test, a NASA environmental health systems examination to assess the efficacy of acoustic countermeasures.   [The O-OHA audiogram test involves minimum audibility measurements for each ear over a wide range of frequencies and sound pressure levels, with the crewmembers using individual-specific Prophonics earphones, Bose ANC headsets and the SLM (sound level meter).  To conduct the testing, the experimenter is supported by special “EarQ” software on the MEC (medical equipment computer).  The baseline test is required not later than about Flight Day 14 for each new Expedition and is then performed once per month.]

In preparation for tomorrow’s SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) activities, the crew reviewed the DOUG (Dynamic Operational Ubiquitous Graphics) software, setting it up for the current ISS configuration, both for stand-alone procedure review and SSRMS real-time support   [Used during robotics/Canadarm2 operations, DOUG is a software program on the MSS RWS (mobile service system robotics workstation) laptops that provides a birdseye-view graphical image of the external station configuration and the Canadian robotarm, showing its real-time location and configuration on a laptop during its operation.  Purpose of tomorrow’s activity will be to position the SSRMS tip LEE (latching end effector) and tip elbow camera for supporting the Russian EVA-11 on 9/3.]

Previous Reports

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

Fincke completed the daily routine inspection of the SM’s SOZh life support system, today including the periodic checkout of the IP-1 airflow sensors in the various RS hatchways and FGB-to-Node tunnel (last time done: 8/4). 

Afterwards, Mike also prepared the regular inventory management system (IMS) “delta” file for downlink and conducted the 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).

Working from the Russian task list, Gennady performed another session with the Uragan (“hurricane”) earth-imaging program, using the Kodak 760 DSC (digital still camera) with 800mm-lens from SM windows.   [Today’s targets for his photo imagery were the village of Grushevskoe, the Cherkeiskoye reservoir, the cities of Makhachkala and Kaspiisk, the Cheleken peninsula and the Khazar oil field.]

Tonight at ~4:30pm EDT, ISS attitude control will be handed over to the Russian motion control system in the SM for maneuvering from sun-oriented XPOP (x-axis perpendicular to orbit plane) to earth-fixed LVLH (local vertical/local horizontal), followed by the standard in-stack dynamic tests of the US-21 matching unit installed in the Progress 15P yesterday (8/17) and its thrusters.   [The test firings of Progress thruster manifolds 1 and 2 will commence at ~5:55pm and run through ~7:35pm, comprising eight firings (four per manifold) of 20 sec duration each, all timed for RGS passes.  Control authority will be returned to U.S. CMGs (control moment gyro) at ~7:45pm to resume momentum management in LVLH.  Progress thruster yaw and pitch control was incorporated into the SM’s propulsion control algorithm.]

The dynamic tests are preparatory to tomorrow’s reboost 1, scheduled at ~9:26pm.  The reboost will a translational maneuver of 5 min burn duration and 1.5 m/s delta-V, yielding a mean altitude increase of 2.5 km.  Its purpose is mainly to determine the ISS mass.  A second reboost is planned for middle of next week.   [According to Isaac Newton, ISS mass can simply be determined by dividing the thrusters’ force exerted on the station (of 855.14 Newton = 192 lbs-f) by the acceleration measured by onboard sensors.]

At present, the station continues to fly in XPOP attitude (pitch: 0.8 deg, yaw: -8.0 deg, roll: 0 deg), moding to LVLH tonight and returning to XPOP on 9/4 after the EVA-11 spacewalk.

Progress Cargo Vehicle Procedures

  • Progress Cargo Vehicle Transfer Operations, Part 1, Mission Operations Directorate, 10 August 2000 [English – Acrobat] [Russian – Acrobat]

  • Progress Cargo Vehicle Transfer Operations, Part 2, Appendix 1, Mission Operations Directorate, 10 August 2000 [English – Acrobat] [Russian – Acrobat]

    According to the introduction to these documents “this book is intended for performing cargo transfer operations in Progress and on stowing equipment in SM and Progress.” These documents contain diagrams and detailed procedures for the transfer of times from the Progress Vehicle currently docked with the ISS.

  • Major upcoming events:

    • Progress 15P thruster tests — tonight
    • SSRMS/Robotics activity — 8/19
    • ISS Reboost — 8/19 (delta-V = 1.5 m/s);
    • ISS Reboost — 8/24 (delta-V = 2.2 m/s);
    • EVA-11 — 9/3;
    • Soyuz 9S launch — 10/9;
    • Soyuz 9S dock — 10/11;
    • Soyuz 8S undock/land — 10/19;
    • Soyuz 9S relocate — 11/18;
    • Progress 16P launch — 11/24.

    Expedition 9 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.

    Today’s CEO photo targets, limited in the current 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 Jorhat, Assam, India (nadir pass.  Weather as good as it has been for weeks), Saharan dust, East Atlantic (Dynamic event.  Looking oblique left for what appears to be a big but not very dense dust cloud spreading out into the Atlantic behind Hurricane Danielle.  Crew should have been able to see the Canary Islands way left.  Usually the Canaries seem to define the line between dusty air and clear air to the north), Hurricane Danielle, Central Atlantic (Dynamic event.  Looking left a few degrees for the predicted location of the center), and Iguazu, Argentina (looking right for a regional view of the Iguazu region, where the Iguazu River meets the big Parana, just south of the huge Itaipu Dam wall).

    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, 11:43am EDT)

    • Environmental Control and Life Support (ECLSS) and Thermal Control (TCS):
    • Elektron O2 generator is On (19A).  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).

    Electrical Power Systems (EPS):

    • Both P6 channels fully operational.  BGA (beta gimbal assembly) 2B and 4B both in Autotrack (solar-tracking, “sun slicer”, i.e., drag reduction-biased by 47 deg angle).
    • SM batteries:  All batteries (8) are on line in “Partial Charge” mode.  
    • FGB batteries:  Battery #3 is off line; battery #1 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 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): 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: 4068 kg (8968 lb) as of 8/12/04;  [SM(552) + FGB(3516) + 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-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:

    • 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 8/14 for brief free drift (Inertial), then back to XPOP until 8/18 for 15P thruster tests and reboost 1 & 2.  LVLH will be regained on 9/2 for EVA-11, then back to XPOP on 9/4.

    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 (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

    Full Size/Update
    Real Time ISS TrackerMore Links

    ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 7:12am EDT [= epoch]):

    • Mean altitude — 356.0 km
    • Apogee height — 359.6 km
    • Perigee height — 352.4 km
    • Period — 91.7 min.
    • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.63 deg
    • Eccentricity — 0.0005348
    • Solar Beta Angle — -21.3 deg (magnitude decreasing)
    • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
    • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 108 m
    • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 32810

    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.