ISS On-Orbit Status 06/18/12
All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 8 of Increment 31 (six-person crew).
After wakeup, Oleg Kononenko performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.
The CDR also conducted the weekly checkup behind ASU/toilet panel 139 in the SM of a fluid connector (MNR-NS) of the SM-U urine collection system, looking for potential moisture.
Kononenko, Padalka & Revin completed the periodic pre-breakfast session of the Russian biomedical routine assessment PZEh-MO-7/Calf Volume Measurement. Afterwards, Oleg, Gennady & Sergei were joined by Acaba, Kuipers & Pettit in completing the PZEh-MO-8/Body Mass Measurement using the IMT mass measurement device, set up (and later cleaned up and stowed away) by Kononenko. [For determining body mass in zero-G, where things are weightless but not massless, the Russian IMT "scales" for MO-8 measure the inertial forces that arise during the oscillatory motion of a mass driven by two helical metering springs with known spring constants. By measuring the time period of each oscillation of the unknown mass (the crewmember) and comparing it to the period of a known mass, the crewmember's mass is calculated by the computer and displayed. MO-7 Calf measurements (left leg only) are taken with the IZOG device, a custom-sewn fabric cuff that fits over the calf, using the knee and lower foot as fixed reference pints, to provide a rough index of deconditioning in zero-G and effectiveness of countermeasures.]
In the MRM2 Poisk module, Gennady continued the twice-daily checking of vacuum/pressure conditions in the Plasma Chamber of the Russian KPT-21 PK-3+ Plasma Crystal-3+ (Plazmennyi-Kristall-3 plus) Telescience payload for upcoming operations. [The PK-3+ equipment comprises the EB (Eksperimental'nyj Blok) Experiment Module with a turbopump for evacuation, Ts laptop, video monitor, vacuum hoses, electrical circuitry, four hard storage disks for video, and one USB stick with the control application.]
Later, after the vacuum/pressure integrity check, Padalka ran his first experiment session with the KPT-21 payload. With the ZB vacuum chamber in the SM RO (Work Compartment) evacuated by the turbopump in the SM PkhO (Transfer Compartment), FE-1 conducted the semi-automated (manually assisted) PK-3 operations while Sergei took documentary photography. The run was terminated after two hours and the accumulated data transferred from hard disk to USB stick for subsequent downlinking. [The KPT-21 activities were supported by ground specialists and monitored by them via video packet streaming over the network which temporarily slowed down wireless SSCs (Station Support Computers) in the ISS. The experiment is performed on plasma, i.e., fine particles (2.55 µm) in neon charged and excited by HF (high frequency) radio power inside the evacuated work chamber. Main objective is to study crystallization dynamics at constant argon pressures (10 Pa) with superimposed low-frequency and varied voltage electrical field.]
FE-5 Kuipers started another sampling run with the AQM (Air Quality Monitor), deactivating the system ~5 hrs later. [Consisting of the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health Systems Gas Chromatograph / Differential Mobility Spectrometer), the system is controlled with "Sionex" expert software from the SSC (Station Support Computer)-12 laptop. The AQM demonstrates COTS (Commercial Off-the-Shelf) technology for identifying volatile organic compounds, similar to the VOA (Volatile Organics Analyzer). This evaluation will continue over the course of several months as it helps to eventually certify the GC/DMS as nominal CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) hardware],
FE-3 Acaba reviewed background material and procedures of upcoming ITCS (Internal Thermal Control System) maintenance operations. [This week, Joe will perform a number of different, but integrated ITCS tasks in the JAXA JPM (JEM Pressurized Module): Refilling the JPM MTL (Moderate Temperature Loop) accumulator using the FSS (Fluid System Servicer), installing an AmiA (Anti-Microbial Applicator) to replenish the OPA (O-Phthalaldehyde) levels in the JEM ITCS loops, refilling the JPM MTL Accumulator again after AmiA installation, and collecting a JPM ITCS Return-to-Ground Sample.]
Afterwards, Joe began the first task by setting up the FSS in the Kibo laboratory and requisite PWRs (Potable Water Reservoirs) preparatory to the ITCS coolant refill. [The FSS setup included filling the FSS FCPA (Fluid Control & Pump Assembly) and jumpers.]
In the SM, Oleg, Sergei & Gennady continued the testing of the SEP (Electric Power System) Channel B Power Controller begun last December by Anton Shkaplerov, using UKR-50 equipment to test connections at the four Russian SNT-50MP power converter boxes under the TVIS treadmill and the BSK-7,5 power-switching device (blok silovoiy kommutatsii). [This is an investigation of the as-yet unresolved uncommanded triggering of the SEPV telemetry parameter (which deactivates the SEP Power Controller on channel B).]
In Node-3, FE-6 Pettit performed IFM (Inflight Maintenance) on the EHS TOCA (Environmental Health System Total Organic Carbon Analyzer). [After first replacing the TOCA Oxidizer with a new one and priming the TOCA water sample loop, Don configured the system for calibration with two calibration bags,- one with known total organic carbon contents (Low TOC), the other with known inorganic carbon (TOC/TIC), and then conducted two successive calibration runs. Calibration data were recorded, followed by data verification and equipment stow. Each software-controlled calibration takes approximately 2 hrs; required total crew time: ~30 min.]
Afterwards, Pettit had ~1h 50m for prepacking US cargo items to be returned on Soyuz 29S, with "Early Destow" items, to be unloaded at the landing site and returned with Don on his plane, specially marked and photographed.
FE-5 Kuipers performed his 5th (R-15) ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) Resting Echo Scan in the US Lab, assisted by Don Pettit who served as Operator/CMO (Crew Medical Officer) to operate the USND (Ultrasound) scans. [Wearing electrodes, ECG (Electrocardiograph) cable & VOX, André underwent the USND scan for ICV assessment, with video being recorded from the HRF (Human Research Facility) Ultrasound and COL cabin camera. Heart rate was tracked with the HRM (Heart Rate Monitor). There are dietary constraints, and no exercise is allowed 4 hrs prior to scan. After confirmed file transfer, the gear was powered down and stowed. Later, the data from the two HM-2 (Holter Monitor 2) HiFi Cards and two Actiwatch Spectrums were transferred from the USND-2 (Ultrasound 2) hard drive to the USND-2 USB drive. Voice required last 5 minutes for crew to inform ground copy process is complete. The USND echo experiment uses the Image Collector software on the laptop and requires VOX/Voice plus RT Video downlink during the activity. Goal of the ICV experiment is to quantify the extent, time course, and clinical significance of cardiac atrophy and identify its mechanisms. The ICV experiment consists of two separate but related activities over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there are fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months).]
Subsequently, André also performed his 3rd in-flight ESA Vessel Imaging (Echography) ultrasound scans, assisted by Don as Operator, using the Image Collector software, with VOX/Voice plus real-time video downlink during the activity. [Vascular Echography (Vessel Imaging) evaluates the changes in central and peripheral blood vessel wall properties (thickness and compliance) and cross sectional areas of long-duration ISS crewmembers during and after long-term exposure to microgravity. An LBNP (Lower Body Negative Pressure) program will be run in parallel to Vessel Imaging. Flow velocity changes in the aorta and the middle cerebral and femoral arteries will be used to quantify the cardiovascular response to fluid shift. Vessel Imaging aims to optimize the countermeasures used routinely during long-duration space missions.]
In COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), Pettit configured the equipment for the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) Ambulatory Monitoring experiment and then began his 5th and final (R-15) session, after preparing the Actiwatches, electrode sites, attaching the harness and donning the Cardiopres with the assistance of André Kuipers. At ~12:15am EDT, FE-6 observed the initial 10-min rest period under quiet, restful conditions before going about his business. [ICV activities consist of two separate but related parts over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session. Today, wearing electrodes, the HM2 (Holter Monitor 2) for recording ECG (Electrocardiogram) for 48 hours, the ESA Cardiopres to continuously monitor blood pressure for 24 hours, and two Actiwatches (hip/waist & ankle) for monitoring activity levels over 48 hours, André started the ambulatory monitoring part of the ICV assessment. During the first 24 hrs (while all devices are worn), ten minutes of quiet, resting breathing are timelined to collect data for a specific analysis. The nominal exercise includes at least 10 minutes at a heart rate ≥120 bpm (beats per minute). After 24 hrs, the Cardiopres is doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery are changed out to allow continuation of the session for another 24 hours. After data collection is complete, the Actiwatches and both HM2 HiFi CF Cards are downloaded to the HRF PC1, while Cardiopres data are downloaded to the EPM (European Physiology Module) Rack and transferred to the HRF PC1 via a USB key for downlink. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there will be fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months). The FD75 echo scan will include an exercise component with a second scan (subset of the first) completed within 5 minutes after the end of exercise. The primary objective of the accompanying CCISS (Cardiovascular Control on return from the ISS) experiment is to maximize the information about changes in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular function that might compromise the ability of astronauts to meet the challenge of return to an upright posture on Earth.]
With the KPT-2 TTM battery freshly charged in the morning, Kononenko & Revin used the KPT-2 payload suite of BAR science instruments, with Piren-V and TTM-2, for another 2h session of conducting air temperature and humidity monitoring behind FGB panels 112, 114, 115, 230 & 430 to populate the mapped RS (Russian Segment) data base. Before sleeptime, Oleg terminated the recharging of the TTM battery. [KPT-2 monitors problem areas, necessary to predict shell micro-destruction rate and to develop measures to extend station life. Data are copied to the RSE1 laptop for downlink to Earth via OCA, with photographs, and the activities are supported by ground specialist tagup as required. Objective of the Russian KPT-2/BAR science payload is to measure environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, air flow rate) and module shell surface temperatures behind RS panels and other areas susceptible to possible micro-destruction (corrosion), before and after insolation (day vs. night). Piren-V is a video-endoscope with pyrosensor, part of the methods & means being used on ISS for detecting tiny leaks in ISS modules which could lead to cabin depressurization. Besides KPT-2 Piren-V, the payload uses a remote infrared thermometer (Kelvin-Video), a thermohygrometer (Iva-6A), a heat-loss thermoanemometer / thermometer (TTM-2) and an ultrasound analyzer (AU-1) to determine environmental data in specific locations and at specific times. Activities include documentary photography with the NIKON D2X camera and flash.]
CDR Kononenko completed his 2nd preliminary orthostatic hemodynamic endurance test run with the Russian Chibis-M suit in preparation for his return to gravity on 7/1 with Soyuz 29S (along with Kuipers & Pettit), conducting the ODNT exercise protocol in the below-the-waist reduced-pressure device (ODNT, US: LBNP/Lower Body Negative Pressure) on the TVIS treadmill. FE-1 Padalka acted as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Oleg was supported in his one-hour session by telemetry monitoring on the ground via VHF at 6:02am EDT. [The Chibis provides gravity-simulating stress to the body's cardiovascular/circulatory system for evaluation of the crewmember's orthostatic tolerance (e.g., the Gauer-Henry reflex) after his long-term stay in zero-G. The preparatory training consists of first imbibing 150-200 milliliters of water or juice, followed by a sequence of progressive regimes of reduced ("negative") pressure, set at -20, -25, -30, and -35 mmHg for five min. each while shifting from foot to foot at 10-12 steps per minute, wearing a sphygmomanometer to measure blood pressure and the REG ShKO Rheoencephalogram Biomed Cap, supported by the Gamma-1M biomed data control system. The body's circulatory system interprets the pressure differential between upper and lower body as a gravity-like force pulling the blood (and other liquids) down. Chibis data and biomed cardiovascular readings are recorded. The Chibis suit (not to be confused with the Russian "Pinguin" suit for spring-loaded body compression, or the "Kentavr" anti-g suit worn during reentry) is similar to the U.S. LBNP facility (not a suit) used for the first time on Skylab in 1973/74, although it appears to accomplish its purpose more quickly.]
Gennady monitored & photographed the running "Physics-Phase" demo of the Russian educational experiment OBR-1/Fizika-Obrazovaniye. [Obrazovaniye (Education) is a suite of three educational demonstrations of physics in micro-G, viz., OBR-1-1/"Fizika-LT" (Motion), OBR-1-2/"Fizika-Faza" (Phase) and OBR-1-3/"Fizika-Otolit". The current "Phase" demo studies a complete gas-liquid phase separation of fine dispersion particles in micro-G with diffusion and surface tension of the fluid. The experiment is conducted over several days, documented with photography.]
FE-2 Revin meanwhile performed the periodic (every Monday) verification of the automatic IUS AntiVirus definition update on the Russian VKS auxiliary network laptops RSS1, RSS2, RSK1-T61p & RSK2, as well as performed the manual update on the non-network laptops RSE-Med & RSE1. [Antivirus update procedures have changed since the SSCV4 software update. Before the installation (on 8/8) of the new automated procedure, the refresh was done manually on Mondays on RSS2, copying the files to the RSS2 service folder, then launching update scripts on the network laptops RSS1, RSK1-T61p & RSK2 and finally manually updating non-network laptops RSE-Med & RSE1. On Tuesdays, the anti-virus scanning results are regularly verified on all laptops. Nominally, Russian network laptops have software installed for automatic anti-virus update; fresh data is copied on RSK1-T61p & RRSK2 every time a computer is rebooted with a special login, and on RSS1 once daily. On Russian non-network laptops antivirus definition file update is done by the crew once every two weeks on Monday.]
Sergei also started a new round of periodic preventive maintenance of RS ventilation systems, changing out the cartridges of the four dust filters (PF1-4) in the SM and discarding the used cartridges.
After visually inspecting and then activating the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox) facility (later deactivating it), Joe Acaba adjusted the video camera and conducted another session with the BASS (Burning and Suppression of Solids) experiment by conducting flame test runs on samples, exchanging burner tubes between each test point, exchanging the digital tapes in the MSG VTR1 (Video Tape Recorder 1) & VTR2 and at the end performing a fan calibration to evaluate the air flow with the new fan flow constrictor installed. [BASS uses SLICE equipment but burns solid fuel samples instead of gaseous jets. Sample will either be ignited one time and then replaced with a new one, or burn multiple times. The four servicing procedures, ops prep, BASS ops, BASS fan calibration & BASS videotape exchange, are now no longer listed separately on the crew timeline but consolidated in one activity. BASS examines the burning and extinction characteristics of a wide variety of fuel samples in microgravity. It will also guide strategies for extinguishing accidental fires in micro-G. Results will contribute to the combustion computational models used in the design of fire detection and suppression systems in space and on Earth.]
André Kuipers performed routine maintenance on the WRS (Water Recovery System) in Node-3, manually transferring urine from an EDV-U container (#969) to the UPA WSTA (Urine Processor Assembly / Waste Storage Tank Assembly) for UPA processing. Desired offload quantity: 70%. [During such transfers, the crewmember always wears protective safety goggles, dust mask and nitrile gloves.]
In the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) André removed the filled EDV-U urine container and replaced it with a fresh one.
Sergei Revin performed the periodic service of the RS radiation payload suite "Matryoshka-R" (RBO-3-2), collecting eight Bubble dosimeters (A41, A42, A43, A44, A45, A46, A47, A48) to read their recorded radiation traces in a special Reader. Afterwards the dosimeters were initialized for new measurements, redeployed at specific locations and photographed. [The complex Matryoshka payload suite is designed for sophisticated radiation studies. Note: Matryoshka is the name for the traditional Russian set of nested dolls.]
Afterwards, Sergei undertook his 2nd regular monthly session of the CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) emergency medical operations OBT (On-Board Training) drill, a 30-min. exercise to refresh his CMO (Crew Medical Officer) acuity in a number of critical health areas, The video-based proficiency drill today focused on a review of all topics. At the end, FE-2 completed a self-assessment questionnaire. Answers were provided at test conclusion. [The HMS (Health Maintenance Systems) hardware, including ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) equipment, may be used in contingency situations where crew life is at risk. To maintain proficiency, crewmembers spend one hour per month reviewing HMS and ACLS equipment and procedures via the HMS and ACLS CBT (computer-based training). The training drill, each crewmember for him/herself, refreshes their memory of the on-orbit stowage and deployment locations, equipment etc. and procedures.]
Working in the Soyuz TMA-03M/29S spacecraft, docked at MRM1 Rassvet, Oleg Kononenko performed the periodic cleaning of the screen of the spacecraft's BVN air heater.
At the DC1 Docking Module nadir port, the CDR conducted the periodic task of tightening the BZV quick release screw clamps of the SSVP docking mechanism on the Progress M-15M/47P cargo vehicle.
Later, Oleg completed the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance, updating/editing its standard "delta file" including stowage locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).
The CDR also took care of the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM. [Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers, replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers and filling EDV-SV, KOV (for Elektron), EDV-ZV & EDV on RP flow regulator.]
Afterwards, Kononenko broke out & readied the equipment for his and André's 4th session with the periodic Russian MedOps test "Hematokrit" (MO-10), to be conducted tomorrow right after wake-up. [MO-10 measures the red cell count of the blood. It is a well-known phenomenon of space flight that red blood cell count (normal range: 30-45%) tends to go down over time.]
Gennady Padalka configured the Russian payload BTKh-43 KONSTANTA for its 4th run with a fresh cassette (#3-6), supported by ground specialist tagup via S-band.
Don Pettit had a time slot/placeholder reserved for making entries in his electronic Journal on the personal SSC. [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]
Kononenko & Kuipers had another hour set aside each for personal crew departure preparations which are standard pre-return procedures for crewmembers.
Before Presleep, Pettit will turn on the MPC (Multi-Protocol Converter) and start the Ku-band data flow of video recorded during the day to the ground, with POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center) routing the onboard HRDL (High-Rate Data Link). After about an hour, Don turns MPC routing off again. [This is a routine operation which regularly transmits HD onboard video (live or tape playback) to the ground on a daily basis before sleeptime.]
At ~10:10am EDT, André supported an ESA PAO TV event, answering questions from Euronews at Lyon Ecully, France (ESA Moderator Chris Taylor, Euronews Anchor Nial O'Reilly).
At ~11:50am, Kuipers had his regular weekly PMC (Private Medical Conference), via S- & Ku-band audio/video.
The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-6), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (CDR, FE-1, FE-2), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2, FE-3, FE-5), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-3, FE-5, FE-6), and VELO bike ergometer with load trainer (FE-1). [FE-6 is on the special experimental SPRINT protocol which diverts from the regular 2.5 hrs per day exercise regime and introduces special daily sessions involving resistive and aerobic (interval & continuous) exercise, followed by a USND (Ultrasound) leg muscle self scan in COL. No exercise is being timelined for Fridays. If any day is not completed, Don picks up where he left off, i.e., he would be finishing out the week with his last day of exercise on his off day. If any day is not completed, Don picks up where he left off, i.e., he would be finishing out the week with his last day of exercise on his off day.]
Robotics Preparations: The Canadian ground team has moved the SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) and SPDM (Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator) into position for RRM (Robotic Refueling Mission) Part 2, to be started tomorrow night for three days of operations.
ATV Propellant Transfer: ATV-3 (Automated Transfer Vehicle 3) tanks and lines are being prepared by ESA/Toulouse for tomorrow's scheduled propellants transfer to the ISS (~5:18am-~10:13am EDT).
No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today.
ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 6:15am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude - 397.9 km
Apogee height - 405.3 km
Perigee height - 390.4 km
Period -- 92.52 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0010932
Solar Beta Angle -- 42.2 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.56
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 89 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) - 77,820
Time in orbit (station) -- 4959 days
Time in orbit (crews, cum.) -- 4246 days.
Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
07/01/12 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
07/14/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S launch - S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
07/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S docking
07/20/12 -- HTV3launch (~10:18pm EDT)
07/22/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undock
07/24/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P re-docking
07/27/12 -- HTV3 docking
07/30/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undocking/deorbit
07/31/12 -- Progress M16M/48P launch
08/02/12 -- Progress M16M/48P docking
08/16/12 -- Russian EVA-31
08/30/12 -- US EVA-18
09/06/12 -- HTV3 undocking
09/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
10/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch - K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitsky/E.Tarelkin
10/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
11/01/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P launch
11/03/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P docking
11/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
12/05/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch - C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
12/26/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P launch
12/28/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/19/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
04/02/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch - P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
04/04/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
05/16/13 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
05/29/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch - M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/31/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S docking
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S launch - M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S docking
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S launch - K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S docking
03/xx/14 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)