Encyclopedia Astronautica
2008.01.11 - ISS On-Orbit Status 01/11/08


CDR Whitson and FE-2 Tani started out with the daily reading of SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy and Light Exposure during Spaceflight) experiment data accumulated during the night, for logging and filling in questionnaire entries in the SLEEP session file on the HRF-1 laptop for downlink.

(To monitor the crewmembers' sleep/wake patterns and light exposure, Dan and Peggy wear a special Actiwatch device which measures the light levels encountered by him as well as his patterns of sleep and activity throughout the Expedition. The log entries are done within 15 minutes of final awakening for seven consecutive days, as part of the crew's discretionary 'job jar' task list.)

At ~3:10am EST, the FE-2 activated the VDS MPC (Video Distribution System/Multi-Purpose Converter) with its four downlinks to allow the ground to conduct HDTV (high-definition TV) playback and downlink operations. Later (~11:30am), the MPC was powered off again.

At ~4:15am, Dan Tani powered down the VSW (Video Streaming Workstation), set up last month to convert and/or downlink analog video from the Russian segment (RS) to MCC-Houston and thence to TsUP-Moscow.

In the DC1 Docking Compartment, FE-1 Malenchenko terminated the discharge cycle of the third 825M3 Orlan battery pack and removed it from the charger.

Malenchenko had 2h 30m hrs reserved to experiment with the Russian KPT-2 science payload 'BAR-RM', testing innovative procedures to detect air leakage from ISS modules using the RSE-1 laptop and downlinking the data via BSR-TM channel. (BAR-RM is designed to develop a procedure for detection of air leakage from ISS modules based on environmental data anomalies (temperature, humidity, ultrasound emissions). The payload uses a remote infrared thermometer (Kelvin-Video), a thermohygrometer (Iva-6A), a heat-loss anemometer/thermometer (TTM-2), an ultrasound analyzer (AU-01), and a leak detector (UT2-03) to determine physical background signs of loss of ISS pressure integrity which could be indicative of leaks in the working compartments of the station. Measurements are taken in specific zones (13 in SM PkhO and 4 in DC1), both with lights & fans turned on and off. )

Whitson & Tani completed their third run with the MedOps WinSCAT (Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool) experiment by logging in on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) and performing the psychological evaluation exercise on the laptop-based WinSCAT experiment. (WinSCAT is a time-constrained questionnaire test of cognitive abilities, routinely performed by astronauts aboard the ISS every 30 days before or after the PHS (periodic health status) test or on special CDR's, crewmembers or flight surgeons request.)

Yuri Malenchenko prepared for today's third day of his five-day wearing test of the spring-loaded 'Penguin-3' antigravity pressure/stress suit with its load measuring system (SIN), donning the suit and its equipment, then going about his business while downloading performance measurements. (During each of the five days, Yuri selects higher symmetrical (shoulders) & asymmetrical (chest & back) loads (~20-30 kgf), after calibrating the system with no load on the suit's internal tension straps. Performance/body motion data are then collected by the SIN electronics (via analog-to-digital converters) and downloaded to an A31p laptop three times daily, followed by downlink to the ground via BSR-TM. The load suit is intended to retain muscle tone during long-duration missions and also retain the crewmember's normal height to facilitate his/her fit in their individual Kazbek seat in the Soyuz.)

In the Soyuz 15S, docked at the FGB nadir port, Dan, Peggy and Yuri conducted the standard fit check of the Kazbek couches, the contoured shock absorbing seats in the Descent Module. For Yuri, Kazbek measurements will be useful to test the efficacy of the Pinguin-3 exercise. (For the fit check, crew members removed their cabin suits and donned Sokol KV-2 suit and comm caps, getting into in their seats and assessing the degree of comfort and uniform body support provided by the seat liner. Using a ruler, they then measured the gap between the top of the head and the top edge of the structure facing the head crown. The results were reported to TsUP. Kazbek-UM couches are designed to withstand g-loads during launch and orbital insertion as well as during reentry and brake-rocket-assisted landing. Each seat has two positions: cocked (armed) and noncocked. In cocked position, they are raised to allow the shock absorbers to function during touchdown. The fit check assures that the crewmembers, whose bodies gain in length during longer-term stay in zero-G, will still be adequately protected by the seat liners for their touchdown in Kazakhstan, either emergency or regular return.)

CDR Whitson continued her work with the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox) and the InSPACE-2 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions) experiment, today conducting runs #4, #5, and #6 (new samples of slightly higher concentration), then exchanging the vial assembly. MSG was powered down afterwards. (After activation of MSG and InSPACE & InSPACE-2 equipment, Peggy checked on alignment & focusing of the two MSG video cams, switched the magnetic field between runs, changed out video recorder tapes and later deactivated InSPACE & MSG. InSPACE, conducted last in June 2006 by Jeff Williams on Increment 13, obtains basic data on magnetorheological fluids, i.e., a new class of "smart materials" that can be used to improve or develop new brake systems, seat suspensions robotics, clutches, airplane landing gear, and vibration damper systems. The dispersed particles are contained in CAs (Coil Assemblies) in the MSG that subject them to electric fields of certain strength and frequencies.)

Continuing the current round of RS ventilation system maintenance, FE-2 Tani worked in the Service Module (SM), replacing the four PF1-4 dust collectors, then in the FGB (Funktsionalnyi-Grusovoi Blok) where he replaced the PS1 & PS2 dust filters.

The FE-2 performed his daily status check on the BCAT-3 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-3) science payload, running by itself in Node-2 since 12/13/07 (briefly interrupted for EVA-13 photo support). (The status check, conducted on the last image taken by the DCS 760 digital still camera which is controlled by EarthKAM software on an A31p laptop, is to verify proper image focus and camera alignment. The SSC (Station Support Computer) is taking photography of the phase separation occurring in the BCAT Sample 3, with the photo flash going off every half hour.)

Dan also filled out the regular FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire), his 9th, on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). (By means of these FFQs, U.S. astronauts keep a personalized log of their nutritional intake over time on special MEC software. Recorded are the 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.)

The FE-1 began gathering tools, cabling and equipment for a major outfitting job for the RBO-3-3 MATRYOSHKA-R radiation monitoring payload in the RS, behind SM panels 121 & 122, scheduled for next Monday (1/14). Specialists stood by at TsUP for tagup as required.

The CDR ran the periodic check of active U.S. payloads, i.e., cleaning the ANITA (Analyzing Interferometer for Ambient Air) inlet plus inspecting and filter cleaning of the CGBA-5 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 5) incubator payload. (The CGBA incubator is controlled from the ground, with automatic video downlinked to Earth. ANITA continues to collect data every six seconds and downlinks the data daily to the ground team. ANITA monitors low levels of potential gaseous contaminants in the ISS cabin atmosphere with a capability of simultaneously monitoring 32 gaseous contaminants. The experiment is testing the accuracy and reliability of this technology as a potential next-generation atmosphere trace-gas monitoring system for ISS and future spacecraft. This is a cooperative investigation with ESA.)

After switching the ANITA equipment from local sampling mode to non-local sampling via its user interface software, Dan Tani used a hand pump and sample bag to collect a non-local ambient air sample from the FGB/Node-1 location, for subsequent analysis in the ER4 (EXPRESS Rack 4) ANITA drawer. (Developed by ESA, ANITA is a potential next-generation trace-gas analysis system that uses a Fourier-Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectrometer to determine concentrations of up to 32 different trace gases in the cabin atmosphere (measuring absorbance vs. wavelength). ANITA provides continuous, automatic air sampling from its location in ER4, taking one local sample every 6 minutes, for medical personnel during the first ten days, later for environmental specialists. Data are stored on the ANITA laptop hard drive, with a representative data set downlinked daily by ground command.)

Malenchenko used the AK-1M adsorber and IPD-CO Draeger tubes to conduct the periodic sampling of cabin air for subsequent analysis on the ground. (Yuri started out by taking air samples in the SM and FGB and to check for leaked-out Freon in the SM, then switched to the IPD-CO Draeger tubes sampler to check for CO (carbon monoxide) in the SM.)

The CDR took air samples for the periodic (weekly) atmospheric status check for ppO2 (Partial Pressure Oxygen) and ppCO2 (pp Carbon Dioxide), using the hand-held CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Products), CSA-O2 (CSA -Oxygen sensor) and CDMK (CO2 Monitoring Kit). Batteries were to be replaced if necessary. (Purpose of the 15-min activity is to trend with MCA (Major Constituents Analyzer), i.e., to correlate the hand-held readings with MCA measurements.)

Air samples were also collected by Dan, with a U.S. GSC (Grab Sample Container) at the center of the Lab, SM and FGB.

The FE-1 inspected the Russian de-ionized water container (KOV EDV), used for supplying water to the Elektron oxygen (O2) generator for electrolysis, for bubbles and possible need for filling up with U.S. condensate from a CWC (Contingency Water Container, #1071). (Air bubbles larger than ~10 mm in the water must be prevented from getting into the BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown.)

Tani verified closure of the protective Lab window shutter for the ISS reboost scheduled later tonight (7:42pm EST). The shutter may be reopened at ~11:50pm when all potential plume residuals have dispersed two orbits later.

Yuri completed today's routine maintenance of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM, including ASU toilet facilities systems/replaceables.

The crewmembers performed their regular 2.5-hr physical workout program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (CDR), TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-2, FE-1), RED (CDR, FE-2) and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1).

Afterwards, Dan Tani copied the exercise data file to the MEC laptop for downlink, including the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

At ~6:20am, the crew held the regular (nominally weekly) tagup with the Russian Flight Control Team (GOGU), including Shift Flight Director (SRP), at TsUP via S-band/audio, phone-patched from Houston and Moscow.

At ~6:35am EST, Yuri was scheduled to link up with TsUP stowage specialists via S-band to conduct the weekly IMS tagup, discussing stowage issues and equipment locations.

At ~11:10am, Peggy, Yuri and Dan conducted their standard bi-weekly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office (Steve Lindsey), via S-band S/G-2 audio & phone patch.

At ~2:50pm, the crew is scheduled for their eighth weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-H via S-band/audio. (S/G-2 (Space-to-Ground 2) phone patch via SSC-10 (Station Support Computer 10)).

Reboost Update: For tonight's ISS reboost, the new delta-V of 3 m/s was determined to account for the changed launch dates of Progress 28P (2/5) and STS-122/1E (2/7). The maneuver by the SM main engine, at 7:42pm EST, is planned for a burn duration of 1m 58s and an altitude increase (delta-h) of 5.2 km/2.8 n.mi. Attitude control authority will be handed over to Russian MCS (Motion Control System) at 6:00pm and returned to US MMC (Momentum Management Control) at ~8:35pm.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today again were Perth, Australia (ISS had a near-nadir pass over Perth, the capital and largest city of the state of Western Australia. Weather conditions were predicted to be mostly clear. Overlapping mapping frames were requested as the station traversed the urban center, located to the left of track. Such imagery is useful for monitoring land cover and land use change both within the city center and along the urban-rural fringe), and Polar Mesospheric Clouds - PMC, Antarctica (IPY--PMC radar research station active. GMTs for this and subsequent PMC opportunities were chosen for closeness to the Antarctic PMC radar research site at 73S 13W. Radar is switched on during ISS passes at the given GMTs. But the crew was to feel free to look south during any night awake pass).

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