Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 22 November 2005

By SpaceRef Editor
November 22, 2005
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 22 November 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.

Before breakfast and exercise, FE Tokarev and CDR/SO McArthur completed their second session with the periodic Russian MedOps MO-10 test “Hematocrit”, which measures the red cell count of the blood, as first part of today’s PHS (Periodic Health Status) assessment with blood labs. [The blood samples were 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. After the exam, the data were saved in the IFEP software (In-Flight Examination Program) on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer), and Bill later stowed the MO-10 equipment kit.]

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Both crewmembers then did the second part of the PHS assessment, with blood labs, taking turns as CMO and subject, using the U.S. PCBA (portable clinical blood analyzer).  The third part of the PHS, subjective evaluation by each crewmember, was performed later in the day.  Afterwards, Bill 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.]

The Russian Flight Engineer also took his second physical test with the cardiological experiment “Study of the Bioelectric Activity of the Heart at Rest” (PZEh MO-1), with the Commander assisting as CMO (Crew Medical Officer).   [During the 30-min. test, the crew tagged up with ground specialists on a Russian ground site (RGS) pass on Daily Orbit 1 (~5:52am EST) via VHF and downlinked data from the Gamma-1M ECG (electrocardiograph) for about 5-6 minutes.]

In the Lab module, the Science Officer powered up the HRF GASMAP (Human Research Facility/Gas Analyzer System for Metabolic Analysis Physiology) and its laptop for another routine 30-day health check, his first for this Increment.  Later in the day, McArthur turned the equipment off again.   [During the health check, the GASMAP AM (Analyzer Module) is powered on and runs for approximately 6 hours to maintain the integrity of the hardware.  In addition, the CM (Calibration Module) tank values are logged to track gas usage.]

Valery Tokarev performed the first part of a two-part task dealing with the routing of a new TV cable from the Service Module (SM) through the FGB, to allow transmission via Ku-band assets in the U.S. segment (USOS).   [Today’s job was to locate the coiled bundle of the cable and to set it up for its installation, to be performed tomorrow.  Support was provided by specialist tag-up via S-band.]

Afterwards, cleaning up from the Robotics OBT (onboard training) activities yesterday, Bill McArthur disconnected and removed the UOP DCP (utility outlet panel/display & control panel) bypass power cable at the Lab RWS (Robotics Work Station) that supported video camera ops.   [The CDR was congratulated on yesterday’s “great job on the Robotics Proficiency”.  The activity provided data for studying the “sticky grapple fixture” issue.  The sticky behavior is believed to be caused by friction inside the WR (Wrist Roll) motor.  Due to the large gear ratio in the SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) joints, the motor friction is amplified significantly and results in “winding up” the WR gearbox and forcing the SSRMS LEE (Latching End Effector) against the grapple cams of the FRGF (Flight Releasable Grapple Fixture).  The test provided data on the third out of four “sticky” release cycles using the hand-controller “dither” technique.  The fourth set of data will be gathered at a later date. The SSRMS and RWS operations were nominal. However, during the OBT the DOUG (Dynamic Onboard Ubiquitous Graphics) software SSRMS data showed a different configuration than the SSRMS actual configurations.  Ground teams are troubleshooting this anomaly. Before the SSRMS was powered down, the arm cameras were pointed away from the Progress in order to protect the camera lenses from erosion. The next planned SSRMS operation is the “LEE Hot Backup” Test, tentatively scheduled for the week of December 12th.  This activity will not move the SSRMS and will be conducted entirely from the ground.]

The crew concluded the reintegration of the Progress-354 (19P) cargo vehicle into the Russian segment (RS) by unbolting and removing the SSVP docking mechanism in the hatchway between 19P and the SM aft end, to allow access for trash loading.   [The SSVP is the “classic” probe-and-cone type, consisting of an active docking assembly (ASA) with a probe (SSh), which fits into the cone (SK) on the passive docking assembly (PSA).  The ASA is mounted on the Progress’ cargo module (GrO), while the PSA sits on the docking ports of the SM, FGB and DC1.]

Starting a new round of the monthly preventive maintenance of RS ventilation systems, Valery worked in the SM on a 1.5-hour routine cleaning of Group B ventilator fans and grilles.

In the Soyuz TMA-7 Descent Module (SA), Tokarev removed the improvised added air cooling to the periscope window (VSK-4) which he had configured on 11/15 by rigging two Orlan suit drying units (BVU-1) at the cabin wall.

McArthur performed the periodic (once-every-six-weeks) bolt tightening maintenance on the SchRED (Schwinn Resistive Exercise Device) canisters and conducted the routine inspection of the machine’s canister cords and accessory straps.

On the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization), Bill performed the regular weekly maintenance, which primarily checks the condition of the SPDs (Subject Positioning Devices) and records time & date values.   [The CDR noted damage on the CDR’s harness and a frayed wire rope isolator (starboard forward corner, upper, outboard).  Bill taped the frayed isolator and will continue to monitor the status of his harness.] 

McArthur set up the video equipment in the SM for filming his and Tokarev’s following workout on the TVIS treadmill, for biomechanical evaluation of the individual crewmembers and assessment of the hardware status by ground engineers.

Both crewmembers then completed their regular 2.5-hr. physical exercise program on the TVIS, RED and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer. [Valery’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 3 of the first set).]

Afterwards, Bill transferred the exercise data files to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) for downlink, as well as the daily wristband HRM (heart rate monitor) data of the workouts on CEVIS and RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week). [McArthur encountered a problem accessing Valery’s data on the TVIS PCMCIA (Portable Computer Memory Card International Adapter) card.  Per procedure, the CDR successfully reformatted the card, but in the process ~4-5 days worth of Tokarev’s treadmill data were lost.]

At ~10:20am EST, the crew used the Sputnik-SM Kenwood D700 amateur radio station in the SM to conduct a 10-min. ham radio session, via a Maryland Telebridge station, with students at CERN (European Nuclear Research Center) in Geneva, attending the “Science on Stage” Festival arranged by ESA for European science teachers.   [Three hundred science teachers from 25 countries present experiments and teaching methods, and ESA has invited students from six different countries for a three-day visit at CERN during the Festival.  Eighteen students had the opportunity to participate in the Space Talk with the ISS crew, from Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Italy, Norway and Portugal.]

The external lower outboard (LOOB) TV camera installed during the recent EVA-4 has now experienced eight loss-of-activity events since installation.  It was successfully power cycled and is back to operational.

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 Central-Arizona Phoenix (this Long Term Ecological Research [LTER] site includes all of the state of Arizona south of the Grand Canyon.  On this fair weather pass, as ISS crossed the lower Colorado River from the SW, the crew began a near-nadir mapping with the long lens until reaching the Colorado once more at the Grand Canyon), Shortgrass Steppe, Colorado (this LTER site is located in north central Colorado, immediately east of the Front Range of the Rockies.  Using the long lens and beginning a near nadir mapping strip from just north of Denver and continuing northeastward into the next target area until the Nebraska Sand Hills were reached), and Niwot Ridge Tundra, Colorado (this LTER is adjacent to the previous target and the crew was requested continue the near-nadir mapping strip until the reached the old dune fields of the Nebraska Sand Hills).

To date, over 177,000 of CEO images have been taken in the first five years of the ISS.

  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 12 crew visit:

Expedition 12 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 Location NOW

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ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 11:51am EST [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 352.0 km
  • Apogee height — 357.6 km
  • Perigee height — 346.4 km
  • Period — 91.58 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0008351
  • Solar Beta Angle — -62.5 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 60 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 40063

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


Upcoming Events (all dates Eastern):

  • 12/20/05 — Progress M-54/19P undocking & reentry
  • 12/21/05 — Progress M-55/20P launch
  • 12/23/05 — Progress M-55/20P docking
  • 01/09/06 — 100 days for Expedition 12
  • 02/06/06 — Russian EVA-15
  • 03/22/06 — Soyuz TMA-8/12S launch
  • 03/24/06 — Soyuz TMA-8/12S docking
  • 04/01/06 — Soyuz TMA-7/11S undocking & return.


SpaceRef staff editor.