NASA Space Station On-Orbit Status 29 April 2005

Status Report From: NASA HQ/SpaceRef/NASA Watch
Posted: Saturday, April 30, 2005

image 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, CDR Krikalev and FE/SO Phillips completed their first session with the periodic Russian MedOps test "Gematokrit" (MO-10), measuring red cell count of the blood. [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 Krikalev stowed the equipment.]

Completing his first biomed assessment on board, the CDR also took the MBI-1 SPRUT-K test, part of Russian medical research on the distribution and behavior of human body fluids in zero gravity. Supported by Russian payload Laptop 3 (LT3) in the Service Module (SM), the test used the Profilaktika kit #7, delivered on Soyuz-216/10S, with data recorded on PCMCIA memory cards, along with this morning s hematocrit data and body mass values taken yesterday. [Experiment requisites are the Sprut ("squid") securing harness, skin electrodes (cuffs), and LT3 for control and data storage. The Penguin suit or Braslet-M cuffs, if worn, have to be taken off first. Electrode measurements are recorded at complete rest and relaxed body position. John s assistance was not required.]

For John Phillips, the major activity today dealt with the station s OpsLAN (Operations Local Area Network), for which he loaded the new 10S-delivered software update on the SSC (Station Support Computer) laptops, both its File Server (FS, software version 6.0) and the client computers SSC-1, -2, -4, -7, and -9 (vers. 10.0). [The new client load includes a web-based version of the OSTPV (on-board short term plan viewer) application, a new manual procedures viewer, and numerous other upgrades and fixes. OpsLAN provides data connectivity between the Russian and US segments using SSCs (A31p & 760XD laptops), the OCA Router (760XD), the ISS Wiener laptop (A22), two printers, etc. The currently functional SSCs are located in the SM (SSC-1 & -2) and Lab (SSC-4, -7, 9, FS). Also in the Lab is the OpsLAN s OCA Router, which was reloaded with existing software to ensure clean load and fast operation).]


Processing Status
Daily Mission
Return to Flight
Weekly Status
Weekly Science
Daily On-Orbit Status
Daily Crew Timeline
Soyuz | Progress
ISS News | ATV

Sergei Krikalev worked on the condensate water recovery system (SRVK-2M) in the SM to investigate the SKV2 air conditioner s current inability to produce condensate flow to the SRVK. [The troubleshooting focused on the condensate hose (MOK), a transparent plastic line from the SKV to the condensate pump (NOK). The latter was turned on, along with the SKV2, to check for humidity flow. The effort was supported by tagup with ground specialists via S-band, and results are being assessed at TsUP/Moscow.]

Krikalev transferred potable water supplies from the second set (BV2) of the Progress Rodnik water storage to the SM (the BV1 tank s contents having been transferred by Sharipov on 4/7). [For the transfer, plumbing was hooked up to connect the 17P BV2 with the SM Rodnik BV2 tankage (which yesterday had its water & air expelled) and an EDV container as catch basin. The water was pumped over by bladder compression using an air compressor via a GZhS gas/liquid separator, to remove air bubbles in the flow. The transfer was closely monitored for bubbles every 30 minutes. Afterwards, the CDR released the compressed air in the Progress BV2 as well as EDV container, readying them for waste (urine) storage.]

FE/SO Phillips reoriented the detector unit (not the spectrometer) of the TEPC (Tissue Equivalent Proportional Counter) in the SM's starboard Crew Quarters area by rotating it through 90 deg and securing it again. [With the TEPC plugged in a regular CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) power/data outlet on an SM panel (i.e., not powered by battery), its telemetry is received on the ground automatically.]

Sergei conducted the weekly IMS (inventory management system) tagup with specialists at TsUP/Moscow, discussing open issues concerning identification of equipment and storage locations for the IMS databases. [Issues under discussion today include identification of actual stowage locations of equipment transferred from Soyuz-216/10S, VC8 gear recommended for disposal, and changes of stowage locations that have occurred after Expedition 10 departure.]

At ~4:50am EDT, John deactivated and disassembled the EarthKAM system, removing it from the Lab science window for stowage. [Due to the camera malfunction, some images were missed, but students had enough flexibility to request alternate images. The system s ability to respond to the situation and restore operations was a big eye opener to the students, a fantastic lesson in real-time ops.]

The FE also took the periodic (weekly) reading of the cabin air's current CO2 (carbon dioxide) partial pressure in the SM and Lab, using the U.S. CDMK (CO2 monitor kit), for calldown (along with the battery status) for use in trending analyses.

Both crewmembers conducted their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical exercise program on the TVIS treadmill, RED resistive exerciser and VELO ergometer cycle with bungee cord force loader (NS-1). For the TVIS exercise, they are using the SLDs (subject loading devices) for holding the subject down, plus newly delivered training loading suits (TNK-U-1), to create a load (typically 4 kg).   [As was the case for Sharipov, Sergei s daily protocol prescribes a four-day microcycle exercise with 1.5 hr on the treadmill and one hour on VELO plus load trainer (today: Day 1 of a new set). Use of the NS-1 is constrained by load limits on the ISS structure.]

John Phillips then transferred the daily TVIS and RED exercise data files to the new MEC software for downlink, as well as the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium.

The crewmembers also performed the weekly maintenance/inspection on the TVIS treadmill, primarily checking on the condition of the SPDs (subject positioning devices) and recording time & date values

The crew had one hour each set aside again on today s schedule for ISS familiarization, to help in adjusting to their new surroundings and activities. [This free session has become a valuable standard requirement for new station occupants for the first two weeks.]

John Phillips filled out the regular weekly FFQ (food frequency questionnaire), his first, which keeps a log of his nutritional intake over time on special MEC software. [With the fresh MEC software, John is using a new personalized file that reflects the food flown for his increment. The FFQ records amounts consumed during the past week of such food items as beverages, cereals, grains, eggs, breads, snacks, sweets, fruit, beans, soup, vegetables, dairy, fish, meat, chicken, sauces & spreads, and vitamins. IBMP (Institute of Biomedical Problems)-recommended average daily caloric value of the crew's food intake is 2200-2300 cal. If larger quantities of juices and fruits are taken into account, the value can go to 2400-2500 cal.]

At ~2:50pm EDT, the crew is scheduled for their first regular (nominally weekly) teleconference with the ISS Flight Director at MCC-H.

Service Module Atmosphere Revitalization Subsystem, Book 2, Mission Operations Directorate, 9 October 2000 [Acrobat] According to this document's introduction "This book contains information for the crew about procedures and rules for the atmosphere revitalization subsystem, Elektron, Vozdukh, Micropurification Unit, and Fire Detection and Suppression Subsystem operations, as well as their schematic and operation logic."

Update on Elektron: After yesterday's two unsuccessful tries at restarting the Elektron O2 generator (one before, one after an effort by Krikalev to repair a leak in the nitrogen feed hose), ground specialists are considering plans to replace the currently installed BZh-7 (Liquid Unit #7) with the spare (but used) BZh-6 in the near future (BZh-6 was checked out for functionality by Sharipov on 4/7-8). As of last night, the pressure onboard the ISS was within Flight Rule limits, and specialists believe another O2 repress from 17 Progress tanks may be necessary over the weekend ahead.

Because of the LF-1/STS-114 launch delay to the July launch window, the crew deferred the CBCS (Centerline Berthing Camera System) installation at the Node nadir hatch window scheduled yesterday (and reported here erroneously as completed). It will be rescheduled to be closer to the new launch date. More LF-1 prepacking took its place in the timeline. [The CBCS will be used to assist in aligning and installing the MPLM after its transfer from the Shuttle cargo bay by the SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System).]

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 Fires, Angola (Dynamic event. Looking left into the thick savanna woodlands for any fires. Dry-season is beginning and the first fires are reported in central Angola [the most flammable part of the planet for biomass burning!]. Oblique views were recommended to enhance images of smoke. Inclusion of ground features in views was requested to assist locating images), Lower Amazon River Basin (the largest river on the planet causes entire islands in this estuary to move tens to hundreds of meters per year by erosion on the upstream sides and mud accumulation on downstream sides. Recent ISS imagery showed major changes [recently displayed on NASA s Earth Observatory website]. Looking right between possible cumulus clouds for documentation of island position/shape), Galapagos Islands, Ecuador (Dynamic event. During the present mild El Niņo event, an increase in green vegetation on these arid islands should now be visible), Pampas lakes, Argentina (Dynamic event. Mapping pass was requested over the numerous small lakes that lie between dune ridges on the vast plain south of Buenos Aires. Prior ISS images provided great detail of lake size and location. Effects of the present El Niņo should now be apparent [implying changes in regional hydrology]. Due to prevailing low sun inclinations, it was suggested to look left towards the glint point for best results), and Rabaul Volcano, New Britain (Dynamic event. Looking right towards New Britain and the cluster of seven volcanoes around the major city of Rabaul [on large island beyond the narrow island of New Ireland in the foreground]. Revegetation of the area after the major 1994 eruption is complicated by the fact that the volcano continues to erupt ash since that time [a new tourist attraction!]).

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 11 crew visit:

Expedition 11 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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Real Time ISS Tracker - More Links

ISS Orbit  (as of this morning, 8:00am EDT [= epoch]):

  • Mean altitude -- 354.3 km
  • Apogee height -- 359.6 km
  • Perigee height -- 348.9 km
  • Period -- 91.63 min.
  • Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
  • Eccentricity -- 0.0007963
  • Solar Beta Angle -- 57.4 deg (magnitude increasing)
  • Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.72
  • Mean altitude loss in last 24 hours -- 40 m
  • Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 36802

Increment 11 Main Events:

  • Progress M-52 (17P) undock -- 6/16;
  • Progress M-53 (18P) launch -- 6/17;
  • Progress M-53 (18P) undock -- 8/23;
  • Progress M-54 (19P) launch -- 8/24;
  • Soyuz TMA-7 (11S) launch -- 9/27;
  • Soyuz TMA-6 (10S) return -- 10/7.

ISS Altitude History

Apogee height -- Mean Altitude -- Perigee 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

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