Status Report

NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 4 May 2004

By SpaceRef Editor
May 4, 2004
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NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 4 May 2004

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.   Crew was commended on a great job yesterday on their first full “official work day” as Expedition 9.

Early in the morning, after activating the EGE2 laptop, CDR Gennady Padalka set up the hardware for the VC5 “Cervantes” NEUROCOG experiment, which included electrodes attached at specific locations on his skull.  He then did software-prescribed rotations in fixed and free-float position in “virtual corridors” and turns in zero-G, assisted and videotaped by FE Michael Fincke, while recording EEG (electroencephalograph) readings with the Halley equipment.   [By researching the integration of visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive cues in the perception of body position in space, Neurocog studies how humans perceive space, what role the sensory information of sight, balance, motion and position plays in this, and how human perception is affected by weightlessness.]

Afterwards, Gennady completed the mandatory 30-min. CBT (computer-based training with video and audio) to refresh his Crew Medical Officer (CMO) proficiency.  The exercise today included a new checkout procedure for the RSP (Respirator Support Pack), to ensure that no cracks are caused in the Control Module (as observed on a ground unit).    [Objective of the session is to maintain proficiency in using HMS (health maintenance systems) hardware including ACLS (advanced cardiac life support) in contingency situations where crew life is at risk, today also including re-familiarization with the RSP, Defibrillator, and CMRS (Crew Medical Restraint System).]

Later in the day, FE Fincke underwent the same CMO skills training course.

After lunch, Padalka and Fincke started the standard two-hour emergency OBT (on-board training) drill, with both Russian and US specialists standing by if the crew had questions or comments.  The rule is that the emergency egress exercise should be performed by every new station crew once within seven days after departure of the previous crew.   [Purpose of the drill is to familiarize the station residents with the stowage locations of emergency equipment and the position of valves used in emergency situations, to work through the Russian Segment (RS) deactivation procedures, and to develop crew emergency joint measures.  Crewmembers are to verify ISS readiness for emergency response by performing specific actions such as ascertaining the locations of emergency equipment, inspecting all translation paths to the Soyuz CRV and determining any obstructions that would hinder an emergency egress, inspecting all vehicle hatchways and determining if hatchways can be easily cleared in the event of an emergency, reviewing and discussing methods to disconnect air-ducts that run through Russian hatches (without disconnecting any permanent hardware), determining the accessibility of all communications panels and hardware, of specific ports, instruments and kits, and confirming that specific valves are in the expected configuration. The exercise is usually topped off by a debrief with the ground.]

Working on the environment control & life support (ECLS, Russian: SOZh) system in the Service Module (SM), Padalka started the regeneration cycle on the BMP harmful impurities removal unit’s absorbent bed #1, leaving channel 2 in Purify mode.  [The “bakeout” cycle in the filter beds is repeated every 20 days.  Each bakeout to space vacuum takes about 24 hours.]

Mike Fincke conducted the daily leak check of the Lab window’s inter-pane volume, using the “Aeolus” scopemeter with pressure probe.  [Past readings, dating back to March, have found a steady leak rate of ~27 Torr (0.52 psi) per day from the cabin into the interstitial volume (i.e., not overboard).]

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

Fincke powered up the HRF GASMAP (Human Research Facility/Gas Analyzer System for Metabolic Analysis Physiology) and its laptop for the regular routine 30-day health check (without environmental sampling), for a minimum run of six hours.

In the SM, Gennady completed the routine technical maintenance of the SOZh environment control & life support system, while Mike attended to the preparation of the daily equipment stowage “delta” file for updating the IMS (inventory management system) database.

In the Soyuz TMA-4, the CDR took routine spacecraft parameter readings (Form 03) for calldown to TsUP/Moscow.

Mike Fincke set up the video equipment to record an exercise session on the RED (resistive exercise device), providing live audio/video downlink to ground specialists for real-time feedback on exercise procedure.  Afterwards, the video equipment was stowed again.   [The video is required for biomechanical evaluation of the exercising crewmember and assessment of the on-orbit setup of equipment during data collection.]

The crew also completed a full workout on the TVIS treadmill, CEVIS cycle ergometer and VELO bike with load trainer. 

Mike downloaded TVIS data files to the medical equipment computer (MEC) and performed the weekly maintenance of the TVIS, including the newly required weekly inspection of the TVIS wire ropes for signs of fraying.

At 2:25pm EDT, the SO conferred via S-band with key Science personnel to discuss ISS payload work.  [Participants in the 15-min. teleconference included the ISS Program Scientist (Don Thomas), the Lead Increment Scientist (Janice Voss), and the Increment Payload Operations Director (Lamar Stacy).]

Today’s CEO targets, in the current LVLH attitude no longer limited by flight rule constraints on the use of the Lab nadir/science window, except for the shutter closure and condensation-prevention plan (limited to 90 min. in 24 hours), were Libyan Dust Storm (DYNAMIC EVENT: With a large spring storm forming over the western Mediterranean, strong southerly winds are expected to kick up dust over eastern Libya and western Egypt.  As ISS passed south of Sicily, the crew was to look left of track for obliques and pans of dust plumes moving northward over the sea.  Sun glint enhancements were possible at the time of this pass), Logone Basin Fans, Chad (this large complex of alluvial fans is situated SW of Lake Chad.  These features are poorly mapped and understood.  Trying for a nadir-looking mapping pass of about 1-minute beginning west of the lake as ISS tracked southeastward), Houston, TX (unusually fair weather for May was expected at the time of the ISS pass over SE Texas.  The crew should have had a nadir view of Houston and the Galveston Bay area), and Tuamotu Archipelago (ISS tracked southeastward over the more southern of the two large archipelagos.  Light was good and weather was improving.  Trying for nadir views using the long lenses to capture details of the atolls and their coral reef structures).

CEO images can be viewed at the websites.

See also the website “Space Station Challenge” at

U.S. and Russian Segment Status  (as of today, 1:26pm EDT).

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

  • Elektron O2 generator is On.  Vozdukh CO2 scrubber is On.  U.S. CDRA CO2 scrubber is Off.  TCCS (trace contaminant control subsystem) is operating.  SM Gas Analyzer has been calibrated and is used for ppO2 & ppCO2 monitoring.  MCA (major constituents analyzer) is in Life Extending Mode (LEM).  BMP Harmful Impurities unit: absorbent bed #1 in Regeneration 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) — 25.2; ppO2 (mmHg) — 154.1; ppCO2 (mmHg) — 3.4;
  • SM Transfer Compartment:  Pressure (mmHg) — 761; temperature (deg C) — 20.4.
  • FGB Cabin:  Pressure (mmHg) — 759; temperature (deg C) — 20.3.
  • Node:  Pressure (mmHg) — 747.71; temperature (deg C) — 23.1 (shell); ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • U.S. Lab:  Pressure (mmHg) — 749.97; temperature (deg C) — 25.0; ppO2 (mmHg) — n/a; ppCO2 (mmHg) — n/a.
  • Joint Airlock (Equip. Lock):   Pressure (mmHg) — 750.07; temperature (deg C) — 22.9; 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 Dual Angle mode (non-solar tracking, set at 90 deg sweep).
  • 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 Standby mode.

Command & Data Handling Systems:

  • C&C-1 MDM is prime, C&C-2 is backup, 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: 3787 (8349 lb) as of 4/23/04;  [SM(755) + FGB(2373) + Progress M-1(659)].  (Capability: SM — 860 kg; FGB — 6120 kg).

Attitude Control Systems:

  • 2 CMGs on-line (CMG-1 failed, since 6/6/02; CMG-2 RPC-17 failed 4/21/04).
  • State vector source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Attitude source — U.S. SIGI-1 (GPS)
  • Angular rate source — RGA-1

Flight Attitude:

  • LVLH XVV (local vertical/local horizontal = “earth-fixed”: z-axis in local vertical, x-axis in velocity vector [yaw: -10 deg, pitch: -9 deg, roll: 0 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 — 361.2 km
  • Apogee — 368.8 km
  • Perigee — 353.7 km
  • Period — 91.77 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) —  51.63 deg
  • Eccentricity — 0.0011172
  • Solar Beta Angle — 37.1 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.69
  • Mean altitude loss last 24 hours — 100 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. ’98)  — 31145
  • For more on ISS orbit and worldwide ISS naked-eye visibility dates/times, see

SpaceRef staff editor.