Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 30 November 2005

By SpaceRef Editor
November 30, 2005
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 30 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.

FE Tokarev worked a 3-hr. IFM (in-flight maintenance) in the Functional Cargo Block (FGB), removing a replaceable pump assembly (SPN) in the Khrunishev module’s internal hydraulic loop #1 and replacing it with a new spare.  The old unit was discarded.   [The FGB has two internal hydraulic loops (VGK1 & 2), which – along with two external loops (NGK1 & 2) – are the main part of its thermal control system (SOTR).  Each VGK includes two replaceable pumps (SPN), gas-liquid heat exchangers, coldplates (for mounting heat producing equipment), accumulator, thermal coils, and ammonia heat pipes (for FGB shell heating).  The working fluid is Triol, a nontoxic water solution of glycerin.  Only one of the two VGKs is active at a time; the second loop provides redundancy.  SOTR is designed for 15 years of operation, by replacing pumps in the internal and external hydraulic loops as well as a flow control valve (RRZh).]

CDR/SO McArthur completed the checkout of the new Refrigerated Centrifuge (RC) in the HRF2 (Human Research Facility-2), begun on 11/28 (Monday), today checking rotor fit, auto-calibration, compressor, and afterwards cleaning up.   [The checkout was to confirm post-launch functionality of the RC for use in future Increments.  As on 11/28, the CDR used the DCS 760 digital camera to document the checkout.]

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Valery Tokarev performed troubleshooting on the #1 gas analyzer (BGL-5188) in the Service Module (SM, behind panel 425), which has shown some off-nominal telemetry data.   [The BGL-5188 gas analyzers are located in the O2 and H2 lines of the Elektron oxygen generator system, to ensure safe operation of the system (i.e., no O2/H2 mixing).  The troubleshooting consisted mainly of visual and mechanical (wiggling) inspection of the suspect cable connections of the digital data switches/commutators (DKTs2V37 & LKTs2V34) associated with the analyzer.]

McArthur continued the current round of monthly preventive maintenance/cleaning of Russian segment (RS) SOTR ventilation systems, today working in the SM.   [The cleaning included four “Group B” fan screens (VT2, VTK2, VV1RO & VV2RO), and in  “Group C” the heat exchanger (GZhT) grille of the two air conditioners (SKV1 & 2), the PS14 & PS16 filter screens of the GZhT2 & 3 heat exchangers and two fan screens (VPO7 & VGZhT2).]

The CDR also took care of the daily routine maintenance of the SM’s Environment Control & Life Support System (SOZh), including its toilet system (ASU).

The FE performed cargo transfer operations from Progress-354/19P to the ISS, tracking the equipment movements in the IMS (Inventory Management System), afterwards also updating/editing the standard IMS delta file, including locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

Both crewmembers completed their regular 2.5-hr. physical exercise program on the TVIS treadmill, RED resistive exerciser 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 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 from the workouts, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

MCC-H added a new task to McArthur’s discretionary “job jar” list, to perform a troubleshooting procedure on an onboard BCR (Bar Code Reader, #1004) which during use has shown a recurring episode of overheating. [The troubleshooting is to determine whether the issue is caused by the BCR’s battery pack or by a true instrument failure.]

Overnight TsUP/Moscow concluded the Progress 19 propellant transfer from the cargo ship’s KDU refueling system to the low-pressure fuel and oxidizer tanks (BNDG & BNDO) 1, 2, 3 in the FGB module.  No crew action was required.

With the solar Beta angle dipping below 60 degrees early tomorrow morning, flight rules call for changing ISS flight attitude from earth-oriented LVLH YVV (local horizontal local vertical/y-axis in velocity vector) to sun-pointing XPOP (x-axis perpendicular to orbit plane).  The maneuver was executed at ~11:00am EST, preceded at 10:50am by attitude control handover from US CMG (control moment gyroscope) momentum management to RS MCS (motion control system) thrusters, and followed by return to US control at 11:26am.

Ground specialists continue to monitor onboard consumables on a weekly basis.  Usages track plans/predictions closely.   [Food: Supplies are better than planned (at Soyuz 12 arrival, food rations are estimated to be at 19, with more to be delivered on Progress 21.  Oxygen/Air: Progress 20 is expected to deliver ~62 kg O2 and ~22 kg air.  Elektron is currently off to allow 19P O2 consumption.  Since ~35 kg O2 would remain on 19P if it undocks on 12/20 as scheduled, delaying 19P undock is under consideration, in which case 20P would dock at the DC1 port. Propellants: Current ISS quantity is 3923 kg.  LiOH (Lithium Hydroxide) for CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) absorption: 26.1 days of Russian LiOH and 31 days of US LiOH are available for the current crew; no change until Increment 14.]

Today’s CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets, falling prior to today’s maneuver to XPOP attitude, were Khartoum, Sudan (the city lies in the angle between the White and Blue Niles.  Greater Khartoum includes the city of Omdurman on the opposite [west] bank of the White Nile where numerous refugees from troubled areas have gathered. Omdurman is harder to see although it is an integral part of the urban system under examination.  Images taken of landscapes east of the Nile have revealed a new megafan, generated by the Gash River which exits from the Ethiopian Highlands.  This fan lies immediately east of the known Atbara River megafan.  SRTM [Shuttle Radar Topography Mission] data confirm the interpretation from the handheld image: contour lines convex downslope reveal a major megafan cone of river sediment >100 km in radius.  The handheld CEO images also reveal that the Gash megafan is far larger than indicated by the modern active surfaces [green vegetated areas].  Ancient west-flowing courses of the Gash River show that the entire west side of the Atbara fan is occupied by this large, as yet unappreciated landform, the Gash River megafan, and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (a contextual shot was requested.  It is unusual to see this city without cloud.  Addis lies under cloud for months during the wet season).

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, 7:35am EST [= epoch]): Mean altitude — 351.5 km

  • Apogee height — 357.3 km
  • Perigee height — 345.6 km
  • Period — 91.57 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0008716
  • Solar Beta Angle — -62.3 deg (magnitude decreasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.72
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours — 58 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 40186

Upcoming Events (all dates Eastern):

  • 12/20/05?? — Progress M-54/19P undocking & reentry (date under review)
  • 12/21/05 — Progress M-55/20P launch
  • 12/23/05 — Progress M-55/20P docking
  • 01/09/06 — 100 days for Expedition 12
  • 02/02/06 — 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.

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.