NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 24 May 2011

image All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. FD10 (Flight Day 10) of STS-134/ULF-6. FE-3 Ron Garan continues on his special Shuttle-crew sleep schedule for EVA support: Wake - 8:26pm last night; Sleep - 11:26am (till 7:56pm today). The other two ISS crewmembers have a free day: Sleep - 11:36pm last night till 7:56pm today).

Yest posadka! (We have Landing!) Welcome back home, Dmitri, Cady & Paolo!! After 157 days in space (155 docked to ISS), Soyuz TMA-20/25S, carrying Exp-27 crewmembers Dmitri Kondratyev (Russia), Paolo Nespoli (Italy) and Cady Coleman (USA), landed successfully at 10:27pm EDT last night (local time: 8:27am, 5/24) in central Kazakhstan. The Descent Capsule remained upright, and the crew, which was in excellent condition, was quickly extracted by SAR (Search & Rescue) personnel. [TMA-20 (#230) undocked from the MRM1 (Mini Research Module 1) Rassvet port yesterday at 5:33pm EDT, after the crew had performed leak checks of the vestibule area between the MRM1 and the Soyuz spacecraft, of their Sokol suits and of the hatch between the Descent Module (SA) and Orbital Module (BO). About 24 minutes after physical undocking, Soyuz performed station keeping at 200 meters. ISS then rotated through 180 deg to a +YVV (+Y axis in velocity vector) attitude, to be in a position for photography by Paolo Nespoli from the 25S BO. Paolo then re-ingressed the SA for the descent. 25S performed the final separation burn, and ISS rotated back to the nominal mated attitude. The actual de-orbit burn of 4 min 25 sec duration came at 9:35pm, resulting in 115.2 m/sec deceleration. Tri-module separation occurred at ~10:00pm. 16 sec after the separation command, software pitched the PAO (Instrumentation/Propulsion Module) in the rear to a specific angle (-78.5 deg from reference axis) which, if PAO would have remained connected to the SA, would have resulted in enough heating on the connecting truss to melt it, thus ensuring separation. Atmospheric entry followed at 10:03pm and nominal parachute deployment at 10:12pm. Following initial observation by Russian SAR personnel in their helicopters, the Soyuz vehicle landed at 10:27pm, remaining vertical. The crew was flown by helo to Karaganda where Cady & Paolo boarded the waiting NASA-992 Gulfstream-III airplane which today is bringing them back to Houston/Ellington AFB (with 2 refueling stops),- the 5th direct return for USOS crewmembers. Dima Kondratyev meanwhile was flown on the GCTC Tu-134 back to Chkalovsky airfield of the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center at Zvezdniy Gorodok (Star City).]

Remaining on board the ISS for Increment 28 are CDR Andrey Borisenko (Russia), FE-1 Aleksandr "Sasha" Samokutyayev (Russia) & FE-3 Ron Garan (USA). The first two are having a free day today, getting back tomorrow to work with Ron and the STS-134/Endeavour crew for the remaining docked period. A new "troika" of Exp-28 crewmembers - Mike Fossum (USA, CDR-29), Saroshi Furukawa (FE, Japan) & Sergei Volkov (FE, Russia) - will launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on the digital Soyuz TMA-02M/27S on 6/7.

FE-3 Ron Garan, who got up around midnight last night (~3.5 hrs before Andrey & Sasha began their sleep), worked several hours on the Node-3 CDRA (Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly), completing Part 1 of the replacement of the failed Desiccant/Sorbent Bed 201 (back bed). [In today's activity, Ron rotated the CDRA rack at Node-3 bay A4 and demated utilities on the rear bed, then removed the CDRA bed frame and stowed it in the JAXA JPM (JEM Pressurized Module). Part 2 (removal of 3 component groups from the CDRA frame, replacement of Bed 201 plus replacement of all 3 component groups to a nominal configuration), and Part 3 (reinstallation of CDRA into the rack) will be scheduled prior to Shuttle departure.]

At ~8:46am, Ron Garan joined the Shuttle crew for an in-depth one-hour review of procedures for tomorrow's EVA-3 spacewalk, with egress scheduled early at ~1:51am. Instead of going through the usual overnight Campout procedure, Fincke & Feustel will test the new ISLE (In-Suit Light Exercise) protocol for denitrogenation, designed to create efficiency in spacewalk preparation. They will perform light exercise for 100 minutes while partially suited, using masks to breathe pure O2 (oxygen) to facilitate purging of N2 (nitrogen) from blood stream and tissues. If successful, this could eliminate the need for campouts in the future. [For their ~6h30m spacewalk, EV2 Mike "Spanky" Fincke & EV1 Drew Feustel plan to -
* Egress from the Airlock at ~1:51am tomorrow morning)
* Set up for the PDGF (Power & Data Grapple Fixture) installation,
* Retrieve the IEVE PAMA/PDGF,
* Install PDGF on the FGB "Zarya" module (to allow robotics operations from the RS/Russian Segment),
* Install VSC (Video Signal Conditioner,
* Install Y-jumper for Channels 1/4 on FGB (to provide backup power to the RS),
* Install MilSpec 1553 cable,
* Install Y-jumper channel 2/3 on FGB (to provide backup power to the RS)
* Take photographs of the STP-H3 (Space Test Program - Houston 3) technology payload (EV2),
* Take photographs of PDGF/FGB thruster (EV2),
* Stow EVA tools (EV1),
* Install MLI (Multi-Layer Insulation) on HPGT FRGF (High Pressure Gas Tank Flight Releasable Grapple Fixture, EV1),
* Clean up & ingress (~7:46am)
* Repress Airlock (~8:16am).

No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today.

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:43am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude - 343.2 km
Apogee height - 345.3 km
Perigee height - 341.1 km
Period -- 91.40 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0003136
Solar Beta Angle -- -16.6 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.75
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 79 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) - 71,718

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/29/11 -- STS-134/Endeavour undock - 11:53pm
06/01/11 -- STS-134/Endeavour landing - ~2:32am
06/07/11 -- Soyuz TMA-02M/27S launch - M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/09/11 -- Soyuz TMA-02M/27S docking (MRM1)
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
06/xx/11 -- ATV-2 "Johannes Kepler" undock (SM aft)
06/21/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P docking (SM aft)
06/28/11 -- STS-135/Endeavour launch ULF7 (MPLM) ~3:30pm EDT NET
06/30/11 -- STS-135/Endeavour docking ULF7 (MPLM) NET
07/27/11 - Russian EVA #29
08/29/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P undocking
08/30/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P docking (SM aft)
09/16/11 - Soyuz TMA-21/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/28S launch - D.Burbank (CDR-30)/A.Shkaplerov/A.Ivanishin
10/02/11 - Soyuz TMA-03M/28S docking (MRM2)
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/25/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P undocking
10/26/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/28/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P docking (DC-1)
11/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-02M/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/29S launch - O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit
12/02/11 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/29S docking (MRM1)
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
12/26/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P undock
12/27/11 -- Progress M-14M/46P launch
12/29/11 -- Progress M-14M/46P docking (DC-1)
02/29/12 -- ATV3 launch readiness
03/05/12 -- Progress M-12M/44P undock
03/16/12 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/30/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/30S launch - G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Volkov
04/01/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/30S docking (MRM2)
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
05/05/12 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA - launch on Proton (under review)
05/06/12 -- Progress M-14M/46P undock
05/07/12 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) - docking (under review)
05/16/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/29/12 - Soyuz TMA-06M/31S launch - S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
05/31/12 - Soyuz TMA-06M/31S docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
09/18/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
10/02/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/32S launch - K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
10/04/12 - Soyuz TMA-07M/32S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/16/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/30/12 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/33S launch - C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/02/12 - Soyuz TMA-08M/33S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-09M/34S launch - P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
03/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-09M/34S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
05/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-08M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-10M/35S launch - M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-10M/35S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-09M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-11M/36S launch - M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-11M/36S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-10M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-12M/37S launch - K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 - Soyuz TMA-12M/37S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/xx/14 - Soyuz TMA-11M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------

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