Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 March 2005

By SpaceRef Editor
March 21, 2005
Filed under , , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 21 March 2005

SpaceRef note: This NASA Headquarters internal status report, as presented here, contains additional, original material produced by (copyright © 2005) 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 22 of Increment 10.

Preparatory to the spacewalk next Monday morning, both crewmembers engaged in a session of MO-5 MedOps/”Cardiovascular Evaluation During Graded Exercises” on the VELO cycle ergometer. Each crewmember in turn assisted the other as CMO (crew medical officer). [The assessment uses the Gamma-1 ECG equipment with biomed harness, skin electrodes and a blood pressure and rheoplethysmograph cuff wired to the cycle ergometer’s instrumentation panels. For the graded exercise, the crewmember works the pedals after a prescribed program at load settings of 125, 150, and 175 watts for three minutes each. All measurements are recorded for downlink to TsUP. As usual, today’s sessions were timed such that they could be supported by tagup with specialists during Russian comm passes via VHF (3:30am/Daily Orbit 15 & 5:00am/DO 16).]

Also in preparation for EVA-13, FE Sharipov reviewed procedures and hardware functionality of the “Nanosputnik” (TEKh-42). This small (5 kg mass) satellite, powered by 10 lithium thionyl chloride batteries, will be activated by Sharipov after his egress from the DC1 docking compartment and later “launched” into its own orbits. Discussions are still underway among engineers concerning off-nominal release procedures in case of ISS loss of attitude. [Purpose of Nanosputnik is to support development of satellite control techniques, monitoring of satellite operations, and research on new attitude system sensors and other components.]

Previous Reports

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

In other preparations for the Orlan EVA, CDR/SO Chiao set up the ZU-S battery charger in the DC1 and initiated charging on the first (of two) 825M3 battery pack (28V) for the Orlan backpack. [The BITS2-12 telemetry system, VD-SU control mode, Elektron unit and SKV-1 air conditioner had to be temporarily deactivated for setting up the cable connections for the charging.]

Preparations also included pulling together and “staging” all the tools and equipment required for the EVA, including the MBRL (air-to-air radio) WAL-4, -5 and -6 antennas for the European ATV (automated transfer vehicle), the ASN-M antenna box, cables and cable clips, the tool “caddy” (KPU), and suit-attached hardware. All work was photo-imaged for review on the ground and supported by tagups with specialists.

With the Elektron still inactive, Salizhan started the “bake-out” cycle to vacuum on absorbent bed #1 of the Russian regenerable harmful impurities removal system (BMP). Later tonight, the bake-out to space will be terminated and the vent valve closed. [Regeneration of each of the two cartridges takes about 12 hours. The BMP is currently still using the same vacuum vent valve for regeneration as the Elektron (the latter for venting hydrogen). TsUP/Moscow is considering the possibility of performing an O2 refresh of the cabin with oxygen from Progress 17 before the EVA.]

Leroy Chiao worked on the Russian SRV-K2M condensate water processor, removing the BKO multifiltration unit, which has reached its service life limit, and replacing it with a new unit. The old BKO was stowed for deorbiting in Progress 17. [The BKO, which contains five purification columns to remove dissolved mineral and organic impurities from the condensate, has a service lifetime of at least 450 liters throughput. The purified water is used in the Elektron for electrolysis or, after treatment in the BKV water conditioning unit with salts for taste and silver ions for preservation, as potable water in the KPV container.]

Working off the discretionary task list, Sharipov performed the daily routine inspection of the SOZh life support system in the Service Module (SM) and completed the weekly task of checking up on the BRPK air/liquid condensate separator apparatus.

Also from the task list, the FE performed the regular daily inspection of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) experiment, including filling its water canister as required. [Rasteniya researches growth and development of plants under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-5 greenhouse.]

Two other work items on the Russian task list for Salizhan’s choice today were the periodic temperature check of the TBU thermostat that contains the GCF-JAXA (Granada Crystallization Facility for Japan) payload for protein crystal growth studies in zero-G, and an audit of onboard equipment for recording ASN-M (satellite navigation system) data to Laptop 3 by ESA cosmonaut Roberto Vittori during his upcoming VC8 visit.

The crew performed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical exercise program on TVIS, RED exerciser, and VELO cycle with bungee cord load trainer. [Salizhan’s daily protocol currently prescribes a four-day microcycle exercise with 1.5 hr on the treadmill and one hour on VELO (today: Day 1 of a new set).]

The CDR/SO then transferred the daily TVIS and RED exercise data files to the MEC (medical equipment computer) for downlink, as well as the daily wristband HRM (heart rate monitor) data, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium.

No CEO (crew earth observations) targets today.

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 10 crew visit:

Expedition 10 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.

Upcoming Key Events:

  • __Reboost — 3/25 (5:00am EST; ~1.65 m/s, for 10S rendezvous & 9S landing phasing);
  • __EVA-13 — 3/28;
  • __Soyuz TMA-6 (10S) launch — 4/15 with Expedition 11 (CDR Sergei Krikalev, FE/SO John Phillips & VC8 cosmonaut Roberto Vittori/ESA-Italy);
  • __ Soyuz TMA-6 docking – 4/17;
  • __Soyuz TMA-5 (9S) undocking — 4/25 with Exp. 10 crew (after 193 days on orbit, 191 days on board ISS) and VC8 cosmonaut Vittori;
  • __LF1 (STS-114) — NET 5/12;
  • __Progress M-53 (18P) launch — 6/10;
  • __ULF1.1 (STS-121) — NET 7/10;
  • __Progress M-54 (19P) launch — 8/24;
  • __Soyuz TMA-7 (11S) launch — 9/27.

ISS Location NOW

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Real Time ISS TrackerMore Links

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 6:30am EST [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 355.4 km
  • Apogee height — 358.0 km
  • Perigee height — 352.9 km
  • Period — 91.65 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.65 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0003791
  • Solar Beta Angle — -6.9 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.71
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 100 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 36188

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.