Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 28 August 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
August 28, 2004
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 28 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.   Saturday — rest day for the crew.

After breakfast, the Komandir and his Flight Engineer performed the regular weekly 3-hr. station cleaning.  [“Uborka”, done every Saturday, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, wet cleaning of the Service Module (SM) dining table and other surfaces with “Fungistat” disinfectant and cleaning fan screens to avoid temperature rises.]

FE/SO Fincke completed the regular once-a-week maintenance reboot on the operational PCS laptops and the restart of the OCA comm router laptop (every two weeks).

Working off the Russian discretionary task list, Gennady transferred new accumulated Matryoshka measurement tables from the Matryoshka server (BSPN) via the ISS Wiener laptop to a PCMCIA memory card (using a program called “ShellForKE”) for subsequent downlink on U.S. OCA comm.   [Matryoshka automatically takes measurements in the SM and DC-1 docking compartment for studies of on-orbit radiation and long-term dose accumulation, using six SPD dosimeters deployed throughout the Russian segment as well as in a spherical body-simulating Matryoshka-R “phantom” and a human torso model outside on the SM hull, mounted there during EVA-9 on 2/27/04.]

Previous Reports

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

Padalka also continued preparations for EVA-11 next week by setting up the Orlan battery-charging unit (ZU-S) in the DC-1 docking compartment, then installed the first (of two) 825M3 Orlan backpack battery and initiated its recharge.

Fincke meanwhile terminated the regular maintenance cycle on EMU batteries #2047 & #2048 started yesterday in the U.S. Airlock’s BSA (Battery Storage Assembly).  The batteries were then stowed.   [The EMU battery maintenance, performed every 50 days, consists of fully charging and then discharging the storage units to prolong their useful life.  After end of the maintenance cycle, Fincke reset the SSC laptop, which was used in DOS mode for the automated procedure, for nominal ops.]

Maintenance was also performed by Mike on the DCS 460 digital camera of the EarthKAM payload by recharging the batteries in the camera to prolong their life. 

Mike Fincke’s voluntary “Saturday Science” today featured multiple tests of the CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment) investigation in the Lab MWA (Maintenance Work Area).  CFE observes the flow of fluid, in particular capillary phenomena, in micro-G.  Video and voice were recorded using the camcorder.

Gennady did the daily routine inspection of the SM’s SOZh life support system, today including the BRPK air/liquid condensate separator apparatus,

At 9:40am EDT, Padalka and Fincke had another weekly planning conference (WPC) with the ground to discuss the “Look-Ahead Plan” for next week (regularly prepared jointly by MCC-H and TsUP planners), via S-band/audio.

Mike again filled out the FFQ (food frequency questionnaire), which keeps an (almost-)regular weekly log of his nutritional intake over time on special MEC (medical equipment computer) software.

After the head cleaning of the no. 2 VTR (Video Tape Recorder) on 8/25, Gennady today cleaned the VTR-1 tape heads, after the ground had remotely activated the machine to enable the cleaning.  It was subsequently turned off again.  [VTR head cleaning is required after 250 hours operational (power-on) time.  It is done sparingly to prevent unnecessary wear on the heads.]

The crew performed its regular daily physical exercise on TVIS treadmill, RED resistive exerciser, CEVIS cycle ergometer and VELO stationary bike with load trainer.

Major upcoming events:

  • EVA-11 — 9/3 (hatch open 12:50pm EDT);
  • 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.

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Nine — 18th):

GASMAP:  Nothing new.

Human Research Facility/Workstation (HRF WS):  Continuing.

Advanced Ultrasound (ADUM):  Nothing new.

Hand Posture Analyzer (HPA:  Nothing new.

In-Space Soldering Investigation (ISSE):  Nothing new.

Pore Formation and Mobility Investigation (PFMI):  Nothing new.
Space Acceleration Measurement System (SAMS):  SAMS captured the second Progress 15 reboost.
Microgravity Acceleration Measurement System (MAMS):  MAMS captured quasi-steady data during the second Progress 15 reboost.

Protein Crystal Growth-Single Locker Thermal Enclosure System (PCG-STES):  Nominal.

Protein Crystal Growth Monitoring by Digital Holographic Microscope (PromISS):  Nothing new.

Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions (InSPACE):    Planned.

Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-3 (BCAT-3):   Mike Fincke took 157 BCAT-3 photos on 8/16.  Most of the images were of the surface crystal samples, but Mike mentioned that 15 to 20 photos of the critical point samples were also taken.  University of Pennsylvania’s BCAT-3 Investigators Arjun Yodh and Jian Zhang note that the picture quality for their samples is good.  They are still working their way through the photos and are excited by the results seen so far.  For samples 8 and 9, there is no evidence of crystallization in the photographs viewed; this result provides important science feedback on the impact of gravity on theoretical predictions for when crystallization will occur.  For Sample 10, of the several pictures studied each one shows that for different parts or the sample (or viewing angles) the sample looks red, which is evidence for a crystal.  Putting together the pictures studied so far for Sample 10, it looks as though this sample has bulk crystallized.  Additional work is presently be devoted to studying the many photos for iridescence, one signature for surface crystals.  Investigators are delighted with the quality AND quantity of the data provided by the crew.

Renal Stone (RS):  Nothing new.

Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites (SHERES):  Nothing new.

Foot/Ground Reaction Forces during Space Flight (FOOT):  Nothing new.

Materials ISS Experiment (MISSE):  In progress. Deployed outside on the U.S. Airlock.  Nominal and collecting data.

Cellular Biotechnology Support Systems-Fluid Dynamics Investigation (CBOSS-FDI):  Nothing new.

Biotechnology Specimen Temperature Controller (BSTC):  In planning.

Yeast Group Activation Packs (Yeast GAP):  Nothing new.

Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students (EarthKAM):  Nothing new.

Earth Science Toward Exploration Research (ESTER):  Nothing new.

Serial Network Flow Monitor (SNFM):  Nothing new.

Fluid Merging Viscosity Measurement (FMVM):  Nothing new.

Viscous Liquid Foam–Bulk Metallic Glass (Foam):   Nothing new.

BIOPSY (Effects of Prolonged Space Flight on Human Skeletal Muscle):  Nothing new.

Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures-2 (CSLM-2):  Planned.

Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA):  Nothing new.

Miscible Fluids in Microgravity (MFMG):  Nothing new.

Educational Payload Operations (EPO):  In planning.

Capillary Flow Experiment (CFE):    The CFE team was excited about Mike’s willingness to share his time on “Saturday Science” to perform CFE.

Crew Earth Observations (CEO):  One of the fine ISS/CEO images of Lake Chapala, near Guadalajara, Mexico is being published on NASA’s Earth Observatory website this weekend.  The article features a comparison of this image with that of a1982 shuttle photo from STS-005 and illustrates dramatic changes in the shoreline and land use patterns around this beautiful alpine lake.  A spot review of recent CEO imagery suggests a trend toward soft focus in long-lens views.  Investigators aren’t sure yet whether this is due to atmospheric conditions or camera settings, but they are hoping for improvement.  Overall the crew’s response to their requests remains excellent, and the consistency in the technique used makes most of images easy to locate and catalog even when the crew was shooting less familiar areas.

Today’s optional 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 Nile River Delta (the delta region was to the right of track during the overpass.  A mapping pass as close to nadir as feasible along the delta margin was most useful for land cover change detection), Hurricane Frances, Central Atlantic (Dynamic Event. Frances should have exhibited a well-defined eye and cloud banding at the time of the pass.  It should now be a Category 2 storm on its way to becoming a major hurricane.  Looking to the right approximately 4 degrees for the eye), and Internal waves, Bahamas (weather continues to be clear over the Bahamas for collection of internal wave imagery. The sunglint point was to the left of track, and there may have been interesting wave features visible within the islands themselves).

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:

ISS Location NOW

Full Size/Update
Real Time ISS TrackerMore Links

ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 11:43am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude — 361.5 km
  • Apogee height — 365.2 km
  • Perigee height — 357.7 km
  • Period — 91.77 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0005579
  • Solar Beta Angle — 21.0 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.7
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 80 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 32970

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.