Encyclopedia Astronautica
2005.07.15 - International Space Station Status Report #05-36


The International Space Station Expedition 11 crew worked this week on final preparations for the arrival of the Space Shuttle Discovery on its STS-114 Return to Flight mission, now on hold.

Commander Sergei Krikalev and NASA Science Officer John Phillips worked to wrap up packing of items to be returned to Earth on Discovery, while continuing their scientific experiments, physical exercises and routine Station maintenance.

On Friday, the crew tested their Soyuz capsule's motion control system. The test was in preparation for a relocation of the Soyuz spacecraft. The Soyuz is the crew's lifeboat in the event an evacuation of the Station is needed and is the crew's ride home at the end of its six-month stay on the orbiting laboratory.

With Discovery's launch delayed, managers now plan to have the crew move the Soyuz next Tuesday from the Pirs Docking Compartment to the Zarya module to clear the way for a spacewalk planned in August. The move, originally planned to take place after Discovery's mission, will free up the Pirs airlock for use by Krikalev and Phillips during that spacewalk.

Krikalev continued to use oxygen from the tanks of the unpiloted Progress cargo craft docked at the rear of the Zvezda Service Module to repressurize the Station's atmosphere. He also completed transfer to the Station of fuel from the Progress for thrusters of the Russian attitude control system. On Monday the crew held a radio tagup with Discovery's crew, and continued packing items for return on the Shuttle, an activity that continued throughout the week. On Tuesday Krikalev and Phillips performed routine smoke detector inspections and on Wednesday made preparations for their Rendezvous Pitch Maneuver (RPM) photography. They will take pictures of the orbiter's thermal protection system as Discovery does a slow back flip about 600 feet below the Station.

On Thursday Krikalev and Phillips enjoyed a relatively light day. Duties included configuring cameras for the RPM maneuver.

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