ISS On-Orbit Status 10/25/12
All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.
Crew sleep cycle shift (2 hrs shifted):
• Wake (this morning): 4:00am EDT
• Docking (this morning): 8:29am
• Sleep (tonight) 7:30pm
• Wake (tomorrow): 4:00am
• Sleep (tomorrow): 5:30pm (return to normal)
Yest kasaniya! Soyuz TMA-06M/32S (#707) docked successfully this morning at 8:29am EDT at the MRM2 "Poisk" module, 6 min ahead of schedule and 42 min after orbital sunrise. Docking hooks were driven closed at ~8:41am. At "hooks closed" signal, SM (Service Module) returned to active attitude control. The arrival doubles the station crew size to 6 persons and brings the total number of currently docked Russian VVs (visiting vehicles) to 3:
Soyuz TMA-06M/32S (#707) @ MRM2 "Poisk"
Soyuz TMA-05M/31S (#706) @ MRM1 "Rassvet"
Progress M-16M/48P (#416) @ DC-1 "Pirs" nadir.
This is the 129th mission to the ISS and Russia's 84th (incl. 1 failed). Since the first launch, of the FGB "Zarya" module on a Proton-K (1A/R) on 11/20/1998, there also have been a total of 37 US missions, 3 European missions (ATV-1, ATV-2, ATV-3), 3 Japanese missions (HTV1, HTV2, HTV3) and 2 commercial missions (SpX-D, SpX-1). It is also the 5th post-Shuttle manned launch. .
TMA-06M delivered Kevin Ford (NASA/USA, ISS-33 FE-3, ISS-34 CDR), Oleg Novitskiy (Roskosmos/Russia, ISS-33/34 FE-1, Soyuz 32S CDR) & Evgeny Terelkin (Roskosmos/Russia, ISS-33/34 FE-2) for a stay of 142 days (144d in space; return: 3/15/12). They joined Exp-33 crewmembers CDR Sunita Williams, FE-4 Yuri Malenchenko & FE-6 Akihiko Hoshide (return on 31S: 11/19/12). [Kevin Ford has been on ISS before; for Oleg Novitskiy & Evgeny Terelkin, it is their first space mission.]
Welcome aboard, Kevin, Oleg & Evgeny!
After wakeup, FE-4 Malenchenko performed the routine inspection of the SM PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.
Yuri also completed the periodic (daily) reboot of the Russian RSS1 & RSS2 laptops.
At wakeup, CDR Williams continued the new Dragon-delivered experiment Micro-6 (Genotypic & Phenotypic Responses of Candida albicans to Spaceflight), today transferring and activating the 3rd Group. [Steps included accessing CGBA-1 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 1) and removing & activating the remaining Micro-6 GAPs (Group Activation Packs) D,F,N, then accessing CGBA-5 and inserting the removed GAPs D,F,N in CGBA-5. YTSL (YouTube SpaceLab) GAPs 1,2,3,4,5,6 remain in CGBA-1. Fundamental space biology experiments address basic questions of how life responds to gravity and space environments. The experiments probe the fundamental nature of life in order to enhance our understanding of how life responds to physical phenomena and physical forces on Earth and serve as the basic biological foundation in support of exploration. In particular, Micro-6 studies how microgravity affects the health risk posed by the opportunistic yeast Candida albicans. In our bodies, yeasts, especially the yeast Candida albicans help us maintain a healthy personal ecosystem. However, when our immune systems are stressed, Candida albicans can grow out of control. When that happens, yeast become so numerous that infections can result in the mouth, throat, intestines, and genitor-urinary tract. The equipment consists of GAPs stored in a flight-certified incubator at a temperature of 4 degrees centigrade. Each GAP contains eight FPAs (Fluid Processing Apparatuses) shaped like test tubes but designed to meet the unique requirement of mixing fluids in microgravity. Each FPA contains an isolated amount of the microbial culture of Candida, plus a growth medium and a termination reagent or fixative. During the three-week flight aboard the ISS, a crew member begins the experiment by increasing the incubator temperature to 30 degrees centigrade, and then activate the FPAs by pushing the plunger to mix the Candida with a growth medium. After 24 or 50 hours depending on the sample, the experiment will be terminated by pushing the plunger deeper into the FPA which combines a fixative agent to effectively stop the growth of the yeast cultures.]
In preparation for today's arrival of JAXA's MOST (Medaka Osteoclast) school of fish, FE-6 Hoshide worked on the AQH (Aquatic Habitat), removing air bubbles from Aquariums 1 & 2 (a familiar nuisance of microgravity).
Afterwards, Akihiko completed the standard 30-day inspection of the AED (Automated External Defibrillator) in the CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) rack. [AED is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses the potentially life threatening cardiac arrhythmias of ventricular fibrillation and ventricular tachycardia in a patient. It then can treat them through defibrillation, i.e., the application of electrical therapy which stops the arrhythmia, allowing the heart to re-establish an effective rhythm.]
Aki then assisted Suni Williams in sample transfers, moving HRP (Human Research Program) Blood mesh bags from MELFI-3 to the Dragon-1 GLACIER (General Laboratory Active Cryogenic ISS Experiment Refrigerator) in ER-6 (EXPRESS Rack 6), and Plant Signaling EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System) bags from the ER-6 GLACIER to MELFI-3.
FE-4 Malenchenko started his day by activating the GA/gas analyzer in "his" Soyuz spacecraft 31S, docked at MRM1 Rassvet. [The spacecraft GA's are activated periodically to check the cabin air in the Descent Modules.]
Williams had ~15 min for unstowing and gathering CMS (Countermeasures Systems) physical exercise hardware intended for her US crewmate Kevin Ford (except for his Glenn harness, which arrived with 32S). [The equipment consists of items such as HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) component kits, treadmill harness, SPD (Subject Positioning Device) top assemblies, TVIS PCMCIA memory cards, Ergometer shoes, athletic shoes, etc.]
After setting up the Lab G1 camcorder for live coverage of her activities from the Node-1 side, Suni supported POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center/Huntsville) by performing manifold bottle swaps on the CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack). [Steps included opening the upper doors, verifying numbers and contents of CIR manifold bottles and replacing certain bottles with other containers, closing the upper rack doors again, turning on two switches, and notifying POIC of rack readiness for command on RPC (Remote Power Controller).]
For covering the 32S docking, Malenchenko activated the Ku-band video "scheme" for converting (encoding) the RS (Russian Segment) video signal from the Sony HVR-Z7E camera and external Klest Kl-154 "+X" camera to U.S. NTSC format and Ku-band from SM, to downlink "streaming video" packets via U.S. OpsLAN and Ku-band. FE-4 checked out the MPEG-2 early in the morning and later monitored the transmission of the docking coverage to the ground. [The image was monitored on the SSC-2 (Station Support Computer 1) at the SM CP (Central Post). Using the NASA MPEG2 VIEWER and ESA MPEG2 ENCODR software, the SSC provided both decoding (viewing) and encoding (converting) during the operation.]
Next, Yuri switched the STTS onboard communications system to pre-docking mode and activated the Soyuz 32S TV monitoring assets.
Starting at ~7:40am, FE-4 observed the final rendezvous & approach phase of the spacecraft until its docking at the MRM2 port on DO2 (Daily Orbit 2) at 8:29am, on Soyuz Orbit 34.
For the docking, ISS attitude control authority was handed over to RS thrusters at 6:47pm. At 8:29am the station was moded to Free Drift until ~8:41am. Attitude control handover back to US CMG (Control Moment Gyroscope) momentum management was at 9:05am.
After the docking, Spacecraft CDR Oleg Novitskiy conducted the leak checking on the Soyuz side (by evacuating the Orbital Module and watching pressure readings).
RS thrusters on the ISS were inhibited from 10:00am-12:00am during the leak checking and BZV clamp installation.
Hatch opening took place at 11:08am, followed by Crew Welcome, transmitted to the ground live on PAO TV.
Upon hatch opening, Novitskiy & Malenchenko installed the BZV quick disconnect screw clamps of the SSVP (Docking & Internal Transfer Mechanism).
Afterwards, the three newcomers, FE-1 Novitskiy, FE-2 Terelkin & FE-3 Ford joined FE-4 Malenchenko & FE-6 Hoshide for the obligatory Safety Briefing by CDR Williams (~2:00pm-2:45pm), to familiarize them with the potential hazards and available safety measures on-board the ISS. [The joint crew reviewed plans for emergency actions, roles, and, responsibilities in response to depressurization, fire, and toxic release hazards. Each crewmember had to practice the emergency egress route from all station modules, and hatches were inspected for the presence of objects preventing them from being closed, such as cables and air ducts routed through hatches. Each crewmember also reviewed emergency equipment locations in their Soyuz vehicle.]
After hatch opening and crew welcome Yuri Malenchenko -
• Turned the BRTK TVS video system off and subsequently downlinked its footage,
• Reconfigured STTS station comm for the nominal post-docking hardline mode (MBS), and
• Switched the hatch KVDs (PEVs) between MRM1 & Soyuz back to Electric control mode.
High-priority payloads were transferred from the Soyuz spacecraft immediately after clamps installation.
FE-2 Evgeny Terelkin quickly transferred the MOST Aquarium payload from the Soyuz 32S spacecraft and handed it over to Hoshide for initiation, with Novitskiy taking documentary photography. [Subsequently, Aki attached the bio filter on the WCU (Water Circ Unit and transferred the fish to Aquariums 1 & 2, then fixed eight fish from the Fish Carrier with RNAlater KFTs (Kennedy Fixation Tubes) in the Fish Fixation Apparatus C and placed the latter in MELFI-3 (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS 3), Dewar 3.]
With Yuri Malenchenko taking shooting pictures, Terelkin also transferred the 32S-delivered MATRYOSHKA-R RBO radiation hardware, handing over 17 PADLES (Passive Area Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space) radiation dosimeters to Aki Hoshide who then installed them on the walls of the JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) and JLP (JEM modules and photographed each of them after installation.
Other Russian biotechnology payloads transferred and set up in the temperature-controlled incubator/containers as required were -
• BTKh-42 STRUKTURA (Structure), and
• BTKh-29 ZHENZHEN-2 (Ginseng-2)
Afterwards, a high priority activity for Oleg, Evgeny & Kevin was to prepare and get settled in their CQ (Crew Quarters)/sleep stations. [Activity outfitting steps included inspection of the CQ and cleaning if needed, retrieving personnel clothing and sleeping bag CTBs (Cargo Transfer Bags), installing the sleeping bag on the sleep wall and setting up & securing personnel effects.]
Oleg & Evgeny serviced the three Sokol intravehicular spacesuits, setting them up for drying out, and also put up the Sokol gloves for drying.
After deactivating the Soyuz spacecraft, the three newcomers commenced cargo unloading from 32S, with IMS (Inventory Management System) logging.
FE-4 conducted 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.]
Malenchenko took care of the daily IMS maintenance from the Russian discretionary "time permitting" task list, 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).
Later, Yuri switched the Vozdukh CO2 removal system from Automatic to Manual Mode 2.
Malenchenko also supported ground-commanded activation of the Elektron oxygen generator by pressurizing the assembly's BZh Liquid Unit with nitrogen to ensure safe operation, i.e. prevent hydrogen (H2) presence in the O2 line. [The gas analyzer used on the Elektron during nominal operations for detecting (which could cause overheating) is not included in the control algorithm until 10 minutes after Elektron startup.]
Joined by Kevin Ford for his first Handover activity, Suni Williams performed another weekly 10-min. CWC (Contingency Water Container) inventory as part of continuing WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated "cue cards" based on the crew's water calldowns are sent up every other week for recording changes. [The current card (32-0005E) lists 20 CWCs (254.63 L total), including 2 empty bags, for the five types of water identified on board: 1. Silver technical water (3 CWCs with 113.1 L); 2. Condensate water (3 CWCs with 14.0 L, plus 2 empty bags); 3. Iodinated water (10 CWCs with 79.05 L); 4. Waste water (1 CWC with 9.68 L bag EMU waste water), 5. Special Fluid (OGS) (1 CWC with 2.5 L), and Off-Nominal Water (2 CWCs with 36.3 L. No bags with Wautersia bacteria. Other CWCs are stowed behind racks and are currently not being tracked due to unchanging contents. Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]
Suni spent several more hours with Kevin on handover activities to familiarize the newcomer with his new home.
The crew worked out on the TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR). [CDR & FE-6 are 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 Suni on Friday, for Aki on Thursday. If any day is not completed, Suni & Aki pick up where they left off, i.e., they would be finishing out the week with the last day of exercise on her off day. Suni's protocol for today showed T2 (int., 4 min.).]
Tasks listed for FE-4 Malenchenko on the Russian discretionary "time permitting" job for today were -
• More preparation & downlinking of reportages (written text, photos, videos) for the Roskosmos website to promote Russia's manned space program (max. file size 500 Mb),
• A ~30-min. session for Russia's EKON Environmental Safety Agency, making observations and taking KPT-3 aerial photography of environmental conditions on Earth using the NIKON D3X camera with the RSK-1 laptop, and
• A ~30-min. run of the GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with the NIKON D3X digital camera with Sigma AF 300-800mm telelens and PI emission platform using the SKPF-U (Photo Image Coordinate Reference System) to record target sites on the Earth surface.
ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 4:00am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude - 413.6 km
Apogee height - 424.9 km
Perigee height - 402.3 km
Period -- 92.84 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.65 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0016663
Solar Beta Angle -- -19.5 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.51
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 137 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 79,823
Time in orbit (station) -- 5088 days
Time in orbit (crews, cum.) -- 4375 days.
Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
-------------- Inc-33: Six-crew operations -------------
10/28/12 -- SpX-1 Dragon SSRMS release (~9:08am, de-orbit 10/28 2:28pm, splashdown ~3:20pm)
10/31/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P launch (3:41am EDT)
10/31/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P docking (~9:40am EDT)
11/01/12 -- US EVA-20
11/19/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
-------------- Inc-34: Three-crew operations -------------
12/05/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch - C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
-------------- Inc-34: Six-crew operations -------------
02/11/13 -- Progress M-16M/48P undocking
02/12/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P launch
02/14/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/15/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
-------------- Inc-35: Three-crew operations -------------
04/02/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch - P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
04/04/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
04/23/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P undock/landing
-------------- Inc-35: Six-crew operations -------------
05/16/13 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
-------------- Inc-36: Three-crew operations -------------
05/29/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch - M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/31/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S docking
-------------- Inc-36: Six-crew operations -------------
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
-------------- Inc-37: Three-crew operations -------------
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S launch - M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S docking
-------------- Inc-37: Six-crew operations -------------
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
-------------- Inc-38: Three-crew operations -------------
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S launch - K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S docking
-------------- Inc-38: Six-crew operations -------------
03/xx/14 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
-------------- Inc-39: Three-crew operations -------------