Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 22 August 2003

By SpaceRef Editor
August 22, 2003
Filed under , , ,
NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 22 August 2003

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except as noted previously or below.  Day 118 of ISS residency for the Expedition 7 crew.

FE/SO Ed Lu completed the periodic Russian MedOps test “Hematokrit” (MO-10), which measures red blood cell count of the blood, as first part of today’s PHS (Periodic Health Status) assessment with blood labs.  CDR Yuri Malenchenko assisted as CMO (crew medical officer).  MO-9 (Urinalysis) was completed in a separate exam last Tuesday (8/19).  [The blood sample was drawn from a finger with a perforator lancet, then centrifuged in two microcapillary tubes in the M-1100 kit’s minicentrifuge, and its hematocrit value was read off the tubes with a magnifying glass.  It is a well-known phenomenon of space flight that red blood cell count (normal range: 30-45%) tends to go down over time.]

Both crewmembers then did the second part of the PHS assessment, each one acting first as CMO, then as “patient”, using the U.S. PCBA (portable clinical blood analyzer).  Third part of the PHS, subjective evaluation by each crewmember, was performed later in the day.  Afterwards, Ed Lu completed data entry for both of them and stowed the hardware.  [The PHS exam, with PCBA analysis, MO-10, and clinical evaluation, is guided by special software (IFEP, in-flight examination program) on the medical equipment computer (MEC).  While PCBA analyzes total blood composition, MO-10 particularly measures the blood’s hematocrit.]

Malenchenko performed another 70-min. session with the biomedical MBI-9 “Pulse” experiment, after setting up the equipment.  These MBI-9 cardiological tests are done monthly (last time performed: 7/25).  [Execution of the medical cardiological assessment is controlled from the Russian payload laptop 3, using a set respiration rate (without forced or deep breaths) and synchronizing respiration with computer-commanded “inhale” commands.  First, arterial blood pressure is measured with the “Tensoplus” sphygmomanometer, followed by the “Pulse” test to record the ECG (electrocardiogram), and a tag-up with ground specialists.  After the test, laptop 3 was reconfigured to its original settings.]

Ed Lu worked on the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox).  [Today he removed PFMI (Pore Formation & Mobility Investigation) sample #04 from the thermal chamber, archived the data from the MSG laptop computer (MLC) on a PCMCIA memory card, removed both the card from the micro drive assembly (MDA) and the videotape used for recording the operations, and powered the MSG down.]

Yuri completed the periodic functional closure test of the Vozdukh CO2 removal system’s emergency vacuum valves (AVK, last time done: 7/24).  [The AVKs are critical because they close the Vozdukh’s vacuum access lines in the event of a malfunction in the regular vacuum valves (BVK) or a depressurization in the Vozdukh valve panel (BOA).  Access to vacuum is required to vent carbon dioxide during the regeneration of the absorbent cartridges (PP).  During nominal operation, the AVK valves remain open.]

CDR Malenchenko conducted the regular inspection of the currently active BRPK-2 air/liquid condensate separator system in the Service Module (SM).  Later, after arranging the necessary plumbing connections, he also flushed, rinsed and disinfected the A-N flexline hose which he had removed yesterday from  the BRPK-1.  The hose, with disinfectant, was then installed on the BRPK-2 unit.

On the operational PCS (portable computer system) laptops in the station, Ed performed the regular weekly maintenance reboot.

Lu conducted the regular bimonthly inspection/maintenance of the TVIS treadmill.  Later, he transferred accumulated data files from the exercise equipment to the MEC via memory card and RED (resistive exercise equipment) log entries, for downlink on OCA comm. 

Ed also performed the periodic transfer of accumulated files from the wrist-band HRM (heart rate monitor) receiver stations to the MEC for downlink, then delete them on the HRM.

Both crewmembers worked out on TVIS and RED.

Ed completed his 14th weekly filling-out of the FFQ (food frequency questionnaire), which keeps a log of his nutritional intake over time on special medical equipment computer (MEC) software.

Malenchenko had his weekly tag-up with IMS (inventory management system) specialists at MCC-Moscow/TsUP.  The continuing issue is to maintain the timely update of the IMS database to reflect the real stowage situation on board.  Today’s issues pertained to Progress 10P stowage and update on 10P transfer ops.

Yuri completed the routine maintenance of the SM’s SOZh environment control & life support system, and Ed attended to the regular daily status checkup of autonomously running Lab payloads (PCG-STES010, MAMS).

On the PAO front, at 3:35am EDT Malenchenko downlinked a TV address from the ISS crew to the participants of the 6th International Aviation & Space Salon MAKS-2003 in the Russian city of Zhukovski. 

Later, at 9:00am, both crewmembers participated in a standard interactive TV interview with Channel News 24 Houston, rescheduled from 8/5 due to conflicting NASA-TV programming at that time.  The interview, taped by News 24 for later playback, went out live on NASA TV.    

In a third PAO event, the crew at 10:34am gave a 12-min. Q&A interview to a representative of the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, Vienna, VA . [The footage will be edited into a high-definition film, “On the Wings of a Dream”, honoring flight through the eyes of aviators, to be premiered at a celebration of the Centennial of Flight at Wolf Trap on September 6, hosted by Apollo 11 LM Pilot Buzz Aldrin.  Wolf Trap was founded by the late Catherine Filene Shouse through a donation of 100 acres of her Vienna, VA farmland (near Washington, DC) to the U.S. Government, as well as funds for construction of a 6,800-seat indoor/outdoor theater.  The gift was accepted by an Act of Congress in 1966 and Wolf Trap’s larger venue, the Filene Center, opened in 1971 as a public/private partnership between the Wolf Trap Foundation and the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service.]

Station repress with O2 (oxygen) from Progress 10P was not required today.

Before sleep time tonight, the crew will have their weekly teleconference with the ISS Flight Director at MCC-H.

According to the crew, both Progress ships still have room for additional material that can be discarded.  Per their request, ground personnel are assessing the disposal of excess CTBs (collapsible transfer bags) and food containers in a Progress.  [Disposal of this hardware would relieve the ISS stowage problem, but that may be offset by having to replace the hardware before it is needed again.] 

Oxidizer transfer from 10P to the FGB tanks was completed without issues.  Total amount of nitrogen tetroxide transferred was 67 kg.  After repeating the fuel line purge, which had a problem due to ground control error, UDMH (unsymmetrical dimethyl hydrazine) is to be transferred next.

After successful troubleshooting of the two tripped RPCs (remote power controllers (#5 and #14) in two Lab RPCMs (RPC modules) LA1B_H  and LA2B_E, which shut off two of six Lab shell heaters, the heaters are back in a nominal configuration.

Under development is a troubleshooting plan to reclose RPC-1 which tripped in a Z-1 RPCM (Z14B_A) during Russian load activation two nights ago.  No anomalies are expected.  [The RPC feeds the SM SNT (voltage & current stabilizer/transformer) #21 as well as ARCUs (American-to-Russian converter units) #53 and #54 in the FGB.]

Update on BGAs (Beta Gimbal Assemblies):  As reported yesterday, when commands were expected to switch BGA 2B rotation to Dual Angle (“blind”) Mode recently, 2B did not respond.  When subsequently commanded out of this mode and into Autotrack, then back into Dual Angle Mode, 2B operated nominally, as it does now.  During the BGA 2B commanding, BGA 4B experienced an anomaly that caused it to stop rotating, because, as was later determined, a command sent to clear the 2B buffer also cleared out the 4B buffer.  Both BGAs are currently operating in Blind mode.

Conjunction update:  Final estimated miss distance of the Ariane rocket body (object #27740) on 8/20 was 5.5 km (radial).  Calculated probability of collision: 6 x 10-112. 

Upcoming Progress Events:

  • 10P undocking:  8/27 (Wednesday), 6:49pm EDT
  • 10P deorbit burn (103.9 m/s):  8/27, 9:55-9:58pm
  • 10P entry interface:  8/27, 10:28pm
  • 12P launch:  8/28 (Thursday), 9:48pm
  • 12P docking:  8/30 (Saturday), 11:43pm
  • 11P undocking: 9/4, 3:41pm (preliminary).  

Today’s CEO (crew earth observation) targets, taking into account the current LVLH attitude, and including the targets of the Lewis & Clark 200-year memorial locations, were Mariana Islands (detailed images for the global map of fringing coral reefs requested), Western Mediterranean Aerosols (looking left towards Gibraltar, where there are reports of hazy air), Berlin, Germany (pointing a touch left for the city center), Damascus, Syria (nadir pass), St. Louis, Missouri (pointing a touch right), Detroit, Michigan (pointing a touch left), Barcelona, Spain (nadir pass; the Olympic Stadium should be visible near the coast), Cascade Locks (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: Looking right of track where the river passes through the Cascade Range.  The explorers camped on an island near the right shore after covering 15 miles during the day, having been kept constantly wet with the rain.  This island is nearly opposite the towns of Cascade Locks and Bonneville, Oregon), Dakar, Senegal (nadir pass), Mouth of Marias River (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: The Marias is a large, meandering river that joins the Missouri from the northwest about 80 miles northeast of Great Falls: looking a touch right of track for this river valley that includes Lake Elwell Reservoir. On the return trip of the expedition in the summer of 1806, Lewis and nine men temporarily separated from the main party to explore this river valley), Yellowstone-Missouri confluence (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: The explorers rejoined one another back at the mouth of the Yellowstone River on Aug 12, 1806, after separate explorations), Fort Manuel, SD (LEWIS & CLARK SITE: Nadir pass. There are now no structures left on this site.  This is the location of Missouri Fur Company post where Sacagawea died December 20, 1812 of  “a putrid fever”), and Puerto Rico (coastal cities and nearby vulnerable coral reefs are the objects of interest).
CEO images can be viewed at the websites

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at

U.S. and Russian Segment Status (as of 4:00am EDT).

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

  • Elektron O2 generator is powered Off.  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On (in Manual Mode 5/3).  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is Off.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is operating.  MCA (major constituents analyzer) is operating.  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 Off.
  • SM Working Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 742; temperature (deg C) — 26.2; ppO2 (mmHg) — data invalid; ppCO2 (mmHg) — data invalid.
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 752 temperature (deg C) — 20.5.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 748; temperature (deg C) — 22.0.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 746.43; temperature (deg C) — 21.5 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 748.65; temperature (deg C) — 23.1; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):  Pressure (mmHg) — 746.76; temperature (deg C) — 22.4; shell heater temp (deg C) — 24.0, ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • PMA-1:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — 21.4
  • PMA-2:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — 19.8.

(n/a = data not available)

Electrical Power Systems (EPS):

  • Both P6 channels fully operational.  BGA (beta gimbal assembly) 2B and 4B both in Autotrack (solar tracking) with 45 deg bias for drag reduction.
  • SM batteries:  Battery #7 is in “Cycle” mode; all other batteries (7) are in “Partial Charge” mode; battery #1 is degraded. 
  • FGB batteries:  Battery #1 is disconnected; battery #5 in “Cycle” mode; all other batteries (4) are in “Partial Charge” mode.
  • Plasma Contactor Unit PCU-1 in Standby mode; PCU-2 in Standby mode.

Command & Data Handling Systems:

  • C&C-1 MDM is prime, C&C-2 is back-up, and C&C-3 is in standby.
  • GNC-1 MDM is prime; GNC-2 is Backup.
  • INT-2 is operating; INT-1 is Off.
  • EXT-2 is On (primary), EXT-1 is Off (both now upgraded to R3).
  • LA-1, LA-2 and LA-3 MDMs are all operating.
  • PL-2 MDM is Off; PL-1 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.

Propulsion System (PS):

  • Total propellant load available: 3657 kg (8062 lb) as of 8/21  [SM(755) + FGB(2902) + Progress M(0) +Progress M-1(0)].  (Capability: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Attitude Control Systems:

  • 3 CMGs on-line (CMG-1 failed).
  • State vector source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Attitude source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Angular rate source — RGA-1

Flight Attitude:

  • LVLH -YVV (local vertical/local horizontal = “earth-fixed”: z-axis in local vertical, -y-axis in velocity vector [yaw: -10 deg, pitch: -9.4 deg, roll: 0 deg]), with CMG/TA (thruster assist) Momentum Management.
  • Solar Beta angle:  -38.0  (magnitude increasing)

Communications & Tracking Systems:

  • 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-2 is prime).
  • Video subsystem operating nominally.
  • HCOR (high-rate communications outage recorder) is operating nominally.


  • SSRMS/Canadarm2 based at MBS PDGF #1 with Keep Alive (KA) power on both strings.
  • MBS: KA 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 Orbit  (as of this morning,6:47am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 383.3 km
  • Apogee  388.1 km
  • Perigee — 378.5 km
  • Period — 92.22 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.000708
  • Solar Beta angle:  -38.0  (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.61
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 120 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 27135
  • For more on ISS orbit and worldwide naked-eye visibility dates/times, see

SpaceRef staff editor.