Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 25 Apr 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
April 25, 2004
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 25 Apr 2004

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.  During the night (~1:13am EDT) the station completed 31,000 revolutions of the Earth since FGB/Zarya launch. Day 5 of joint Exp.8/Exp.9 operations.  Ahead: Week 27 for Expedition 8 — their last week in space.

*Sunday* — though not much of a rest day for the five station residents, after their wake-up at midnight (EDT), followed by another demanding 15.5-hr. day (sleep: 3:30pm).  But they must have felt good on receiving more kudos on a “really good job with the payload and SSRMS ops yesterday”.

Handover activities between Exp. 8 & Exp. 9 continued on schedule, with a last-minute change for Mike Foale and Mike Fincke for resizing the onboard EMU/spacesuits.  Gennady Padalka and Alexander Kaleri worked Russian experiments besides their handovers. [In his handover, Kaleri particularly emphasized procedures (incl. “lessons learned”) for rebooting the PACKET laptop and ISS “Wiener” power laptop every morning, including synchronization of the Matryoshka’s BSPN payload server from the Wiener after setting up the latter with the exact time as per the station clock, working with Email on the PACKET laptop (receiving, printing, archiving, copying), and working with photographs on the ÒÐ1 laptop (pictures of EVA, Earth, service systems & devices, inside and PAO views, Uragan, personal, etc.).]

VC6 FE-1 André Kuipers, on his FD7, again concentrated on his scheduled payloads of the European “Delta” science package, today predominantly featuring the experiment ARGES, for which he performed the manual Helical Instabilities investigation on lamps 11-20 in the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox).  This completes ARGES, and the MSG was powered off.  Other experiments for Kuipers were ICE in its incubator, SAMPLE, MOUSE, MOP, MUSCLE, and Seeds in Space.  In addition, on his optional task list André had the photographic activities of documenting his work and taking pictures of Holland during suitable overflight passes.  [An investigation is underway why four of the six “Makita” batteries did not seem to charge properly in support of CIRCA (and would not run the power tool), as reported by “Spanky” Fincke.]

Foale and Fincke had two hours set aside for resizing three EMUs plus one hour for a communications check. [The resizing of all three on-orbit EMUs was necessary to prepare for an unscheduled EVA in support of the replacement of the failed CMG-2 RPCM (remote power controller module).  The resizing, which involved EMUs #3011 for Fincke (EV1) and #3005 for Padalka (EV2), plus EMU #3013, kept in stowage as backup, was entirely successful.  The subsequent comm check was to test both radios of #3011 on high and low frequency as well as hardline.  After the midterm checkout a data drop out had been noticed that might be tied to the transition procedure between comm modes.  All modes operated as expected.  The switch from Alternate to Primary radio again experienced a delay of ~4 min, but good data was received in all modes.  It was determined that this delay is peculiar to the data processing software.  The crew commented that the suits look really good and that the task was excellently suited for Mike Fincke to familiarize himself with the “Quest” Airlock.]

Sasha Kaleri worked on the Russian segment (RS) air ventilation system to restore the nominal IMV (intermodule ventilation) configuration up to the 4/29 departure of 7S/Soyuz-213 from the DC-1 docking module. [The task involved disconnecting an air duct from the SKV-1 air conditioner, re-installation of a ventilation grille in its nominal location and stowing the removed air duct.]

Mike Fincke performed the daily leak check of the Lab window’s inter-pane volume, using the “Aeolus” scopemeter with pressure probe.  The pressure at 1:40am EDT this morning was 58.8 Torr (yesterday @ 1:55am: 28.5 Torr).

Fincke then floated through the station to set up the 16 new RAMs (radiation area monitors) that had arrived with Soyuz-214.  After the deployment, he took digital pictures to document the placements.

FE Sasha Kaleri set up the equipment for the Russian MBI-2 Deuraz (“Diuresis”) experiment, to be conducted by him tomorrow and on Tuesday.  [Deuraz requires Sasha tomorrow to record toilet use time in the morning, perform urine sample collections throughout the day, and log meal and fluid intake on a record card.  Additional work, to be completed on Tuesday, consists of collecting his venous blood samples, followed by centrifugation to separate the blood into cells and plasma, and finally closeout and stowage.]

Kaleri used the IPD Draeger tube air samplers to sample for ammonia (NH3), collecting samples in the SM.  [NH3 sampling is regularly done before and after the MBI-2 Deuraz experiment.]

Also, the MCA (major constituents analyzer) was activated for a “zero” calibration and data take, after exhibiting a “MCA Pressure Out of Tolerance” caution that cleared within 10 seconds.  MCA has now been placed back in LEM (Life Extending Mode).

CDR-9 Padalka attended to the daily routine maintenance of the SOZh environmental control & life support systems in the SM and prepared the daily “delta” file for updating the IMS (inventory management system) database.

Alex Kaleri worked on the electronics of the GTS (Global Timing System), replacing the used flash card with a new one, delivered on 8S. [The electronics systems of the Russian/German GTS (Global Timing System) are installed in the SM, with two transmitters intended to broadcast a time signal at 400.1 MHz (1 watt) and 1428 MHz (0.5 watt) straight downward (nadir) for worldwide clock synchronization.  The system has been experiencing problems for a long time.] 

Sasha also performed his regular daily inspection of the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 (“Plants-2”) experiment which researches growth and development of plants under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-4 greenhouse.

Later, Kaleri also set up the equipment for the Russian MBI-11 Gematologia (“Hematology”) experiment, which he will undergo tomorrow. [MBI-11 investigates the decrease in red blood cell mass during long duration exposure to micro-G.  The test requires drawing blood samples for analysis with the special “Erythrocyte” kit.]

Gennady Padalka conducted another run with the Russian Fluorestsentsiya (“Fluorescence”) experiment using the FORREY apparatus, again being photographed by Kaleri during the activity with the Nikon D1.  Begun on 4/22, the experiment is performed daily until 4/28.

André had another live television event with media in Holland, during which he was interviewed by TV journalists Frits Barend and Henk van Dorp.

A second media event for Kuipers was a Dutch radio interview on “NOS Radio 1 Journaal” by journalist Sander van Hoorn.

During today’s experiment session with the ARISS ham radio equipment in the SM, Kuipers chatted with students of the “Saltoschool Hanevoet” elementary school, “Sint Joriscollege” middle school and the Technical University of Eindhoven, assembled at Hanevoet School in Eindhoven, Netherlands.

The two Expedition crews performed the full regimen of physical exercise on RED (resistive exercise device) and TVIS (treadmill with vibration isolation and stabilization), and Foale took Fincke through a familiarization session of scheduled RED inspection as well as the monthly tightening of the RED’s bolts.

Yesterday’s Robotics handover and training operations with the Mobile Servicer System (MSS) went well, introducing Gennady Padalka and Mike Fincke to the on-orbit hardware and Ground-as-M2 operations (for a 2-person crew). [The ops went as planned except for a problem encountered during the grapple exercise: Near the end of the “rigidize” step during the grapple at MBS PDGF-3 (Mobile Base System/Power & Data Grapple Fixture #3), the capture aborted and the SSRMS “safed” itself due to a lower than required tension value indicated by the carriage load cell.  The crew performed a manual procedure to recover from the capture abort and completed the grapple successfully.]

U.S. and Russian Segment Status (as of today, 11:00am EDT).

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

  • Elektron O2 generator is On.  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On (Auto).  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is On.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is operating.  SM Gas Analyzer has been calibrated and is used for ppO2 and 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).  SFOG slot#2 fan suspect (not usable).
  • SM Working Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 742; temperature (deg C) — 26.9; ppO2 (mmHg) — 159.1; ppCO2 (mmHg) — 2.5;
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 761; temperature (deg C) — 21.4.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 760; temperature (deg C) — 22.7.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 752.16; temperature (deg C) — 21.8 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 754.11; temperature (deg C) — 25.4; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):   Pressure (mmHg) — 754.31; temperature (deg C) — 23.5; shell heater temp (deg C) — n/a, ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • (n/a = data not available)
  • PMA-1:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — n/a
  • PMA-2:  Shell heater temp (deg C) — n/a.

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).
  • SM batteries:  All batteries (8) are in “Partial Charge” mode.
  • FGB batteries:  Battery #1 is off-line (capacity restoration mode, ROM); all other batteries (5) are in “Partial Charge” mode.
  • Plasma Contactor Unit PCU-1 is in Standby mode; PCU-2 is in Manual 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-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.
  • 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): 2 redundant lanes (of 3) operational (string 1 dropped out 11/22/03).
  • SM Central Computer (TsVM): 2 redundant lanes (of 3) operational (string #3 dropped out 10/22/03).
  • FGB MDM-1 is Off (failed, 11/21/03); MDM-2 is Operational.

Propulsion System:

  • Total propellant load available: 3875 (8543 lb) as of 4/15/04;  [SM(755) + FGB(2461) + Progress M-1(659)].  (Capability: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Attitude Control Systems:

  • 3 CMGs on-line (CMG-1 failed, since 6/6/02).
  • 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: -90 deg, pitch: -9 deg, roll: 1.7 deg]), with CMG/TA (thruster assist) Momentum Management.

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 (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 Orbit  (as of this morning, 7:25am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 362.3 km
  • Apogee — 369.9 km
  • Perigee — 354.8 km
  • Period — 91.79 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0011195
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.69
  • Mean altitude loss last 24 hours — 140 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 31004

For more on ISS orbit and worldwide ISS naked-eye visibility dates/times, see

SpaceRef staff editor.