Encyclopedia Astronautica
2008.03.01 - ISS On-Orbit Status 03/01/08


Saturday -- off-duty day for CDR Whitson, FE-1 Malenchenko and FE-2 Eyharts except for housekeeping and voluntary work.

The crew completed the regular weekly three-hour task of thorough station cleaning. ("Uborka", usually done on Saturdays, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, damp cleaning of the Service Module (SM) dining table, other frequently touched surfaces and surfaces where trash is collected, as well as the CDR's sleep station with a standard cleaning solution; also, fan screens and grilles are cleaned to avoid temperature rises. Special cleaning is also done every 90 days on the HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) bacteria filters in the Lab.)

As part of the house cleaning, Malenchenko performed preventive maintenance cleaning on the FS5, FS6, FS9, VPkhO, VdPrK, VPrK & TsV2 fan grilles in the SM, DC1 Docking Module, and FGB (Funktsionalnyi-Grusovoi Blok).

Later, Peggy conducted the visual microbial (bacterial & fungal) 'T+5 Day' analysis of surface samples which she collected on 2/25 with the SSK/MAS (Surface Sampling Kit/Microbial Air Sampler) at specific locations near air diffusers in the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory). (The sampling analysis is performed once per month for the first three months, and once every three months thereafter. Bacterial and fungal air samples are taken at two locations in each module. The colony growth on the sampling slides is analyzed after five days of incubation in four Petri dishes. For onboard visual analysis of media slides from SSK (Surface Sampling Kit), MCDs (microbial capture devices) from WMK (Water Monitoring Kit), coliform detection bags from MWAK (Microbial Water Analysis Kit), and Petri dishes from the MAS kit, the crew has a procedure for visual inspection of samples for bacterial and fungal colony growths after appropriate incubation periods.)

FE-2 Eyharts filled out the regular FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire), his second, on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). (By means of these FFQs, NASA/ESA 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 CDR worked on the U.S. OGS (Oxygen Generation System), removing the PWR (Payload Water Reservoir after verifying that it was empty and replacing it with a full PWR (#2004), then reactivating the OPS WDS (Water Delivery System). (The ground monitored the activity via S-band and returned the unit to 'Process' after R&R completion. Like the Elektron, OGS produces O2 from water by electrolysis, dumping the also generated H2 (hydrogen) through venting.)

Yuri Malenchenko worked a number of standard maintenance/service tasks on Russian Segment (RS) systems, specifically -

Completing the routine 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 and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers); and - working from the Russian voluntary 'time permitting' task list -
Conducting the regular daily checkup on the Japanese experiment GCF-JAXA (Granada Crystallization Facility) in the Russian TBU incubator, maintained at +20 degC, including a temperature check on its ART (automatic temperature recorder);
Performing the periodic collection & deletion of readings on the MOSFET (metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistor) radiation sensor reader/display of the RBO-3-2 Matryoshka-R antroph-amorphous (human torso) "phantoms" located inside the station for sophisticated radiation studies, collecting radiation measurements every 15 minutes around the clock;
Completing a run with the Russian "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program, using the Nikon D2X digital camera with 800 mm focal length lens plus video footage using the SONY HVR-Z1J digital high-definition camcorder provided last year by VC12 (Visiting Crewmember #12) Charles Simonyi (Targets uplinked for today were fires in Volga-Akhtubinsk alluvial plain, contamination in Caspian Sea waters, Aral Sea and dust storm (if present), video footage of the Pyrenees mountains (from DC1 window 2), video footage of Pyrenees mountains (Window 2 in DC1), Patagonia Glaciers and Icebergs in the Drake Passage); and
Performing another KPT-3 session to make observations and take aerial KPT-3 photography of environmental conditions for Russia's Environmental Safety Agency (ECON), using the Nikon D2X digital camera with SIGMA 300-800mm telephoto lens today to document water surface contamination in the Sevastopol port area.
A new job on the U.S. discretionary 'job jar' task list for Peggy Whitson has her move the PCS (Portable Computer System) A31p laptop in the SM from the PCS-2 port to the PCS-1 port (since the latter remains powered in case the FGB fire safing response is initiated). (Previously unable to support the higher electrical draw of the A31p, the port has meanwhile been upgraded and is ready to power the SM PCS.)

A second new task in the 'job jar' is for Leo Eyharts to start preparing end-of-increment/departure cleanup and prepacking.

The crewmembers completed 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 (FE-1, FE-2), RED resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-2) and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1, FE-2).

Peggy then transferred the crew's exercise data file to the MEC laptop for downlinking, as well as 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 ~5:55am EST, the crew downlinked a PAO TV message of greetings and congratulations to TsUP-Moscow for replay on March 13 at the 50th Anniversary of the liquid-fuel rocket engine manufacturing plant Proton-PM in Perm, builder of the engines for the Proton booster, headed by General Director Arbuzov Igor Alexandrovich. ('Dear Igor Alexandrovich, dear Proton team members: On behalf of the International Space Station crew we wish happy 50th Anniversary to the special enterprise for manufacturing liquid fuels rocket engines. You are the only enterprise in the country that builds first-stage engines for the Proton booster, which are recognized today as the most reliable in the world. By using your engines we have built our space home - the International Space Station. The trademark of your facility rests on exemplary work ethic, teamwork, skilled technical team, its talent and professionalism. We are certain that your sense of responsibility, the warmth of your hands and hearts applied to your work will serve our country well for many years to come. We wish your whole team and veterans of the enterprise new achievements, good health, and prosperity. We are certain that the product manufactured in Perm region will always be reliable, powerful and in great demand in Russia.')

At ~7:15am, Yuri Malenchenko had his weekly PFC (Private Family Conference) via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on the SSC-9 laptop).

At ~9:00am, the crewmembers held their regular WPC (Weekly Planning Conference) with the ground, discussing next week's "Look-Ahead Plan" (prepared jointly by MCC-H and TsUP/Moscow timeline planners) via S-band/audio, reviewing the monthly calendar, upcoming activities, and any concerns about future on-orbit events.

CDRA Update: After yesterday's IFM (In-Flight Maintenance) on the Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly by Peggy Whitson, CDRA continues to operate nominally. (CDRA Bed 2 (#202) temperature sensor A had recently shown erratic behavior and signs of degradation that reduced system functionality, causing the bed heaters to shut off during times when they should have heated the bed to 'bake out' the adsorbed CO2. In the IFM, Peggy used four pin/socket jumpers to provide connectivity between CDRA Bed 2's redundant temperature sensors B and C while bypassing the erratic temperature sensor A. After the jumpers were installed, CDRA was successfully activated.)

RPC Trip Update: The trip of RPC-3 (Remote Power Controller 03) in RPCM (RPC Module) LA2B_G last weekend (2/24) has proved to have been due to an overcurrent. The RPC, which powers the MTL RFCA (Moderate Temperature Loop Rack Flow Control Assembly) in Node-1, used to provide more MTL flow to the US Airlock depress pump during EVAs, was closed yesterday morning and has remained closed to date, indicating the trip may have been spurious.

COL Update: Columbus module and systems are reported to perform nominally.

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Sixteen -- Week 19)

ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS): Radiation measurements continue to be performed in the PIRS module. Radiation measurements continue to be performed in the PIRS module. The latest memory card exchange occurred yesterday (2/29).

ANITA: Completed.

BCAT-3 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test 3): Reserve.

CARDIOCOG-2: Completed.

CCISS (Cardiovascular & Cerebrovascular Control on Return from ISS): Reserve.

CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment): Reserve.

CSI-2/CGBA (CGBA Science Insert #2/Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus): In progress.

CGBA-2 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 2): Complete.

CSLM-2 (Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures 2): In progress.

EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students): Complete.

ELITE-S2 (Elaboratore Immagini Televisive - Space 2): Planned.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations): Reserve.

ETD (Eye Tracking Device): In progress.

EuTEF (European Technology Exposure Facility): On 02/26, the EuTEF MMU (Mass Memory Unit) troubleshooting procedure has been successfully performed and DHPU (Data Handling & Power Unit) full functionality has been recovered. To date, 8 out of 9 instruments have been checked out from ground, mostly successfully but with some anomalies under assessment. On 2/27, EuTEF platform had to be powered down ('graceful shutdown') after some erroneous TM (telemetry) was encountered. After power cycling, situation is back to nominal. The EuTEF science program via scripts will begin soon.

Fluid Science Laboratory (FSL): The FSL Facility commissioning continues this week and next week, with the following look-ahead activities for Week 20: - Last mechanical configuration;- First Fluid Science Laboratory (FSL) Rack activation and software upgrade;- Optical check-out activities;- GEOFLOW Experiment Container (EC) insertion into FSL; - GEOFLOW check-out activities; - First GEOFLOW science runs.

IMMUNO (Neuroendocrine & Immune Responses in Humans During & After Long Term Stay at ISS): In progress.

InSPACE-2 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 2): In progress.

Integrated Immune: In progress.

KUBIK-FM1/ KUBIK-FM2 Centrifuge/Incubators: Following troubleshooting activities performed during Week 17, telemetry has been downlinked and analysed by KUBIK PD (Payload Developer). All is nominal.

LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System): Complete.

MISSE (Materials ISS Experiment): Ongoing.

MTR-2 (Russian radiation measurements): Passive dosimeters measurements in DC1 'Pirs'.

MULTIGEN-1: Completed.

MSG-SAME (Microgravity Science Glovebox): Complete.

NOA-2 (Nitric Oxide Analyzer): Planned.

NUTRITION/REPOSITORY: 'Leo, thank you for your attention to detail in completing the FD15 Nutr/Rep session. The information conveyed via crew notes was very helpful.'

PMDIS (Perceptual Motor Deficits in Space): Complete.

SAMS/MAMS (Space & Microgravity Acceleration Measurement Systems): Ongoing.

SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight): In progress.

SOLAR (Solar Monitoring Observatory): Some software glitches have been repeatedly encountered with the Sun Pointing Device platform, and are currently under investigation. Temperature and power monitoring is ongoing and reported as nominal. Some anomalies have also been encountered with a sub-system (DIARAD) of the SOVIM instrument, which had to be powered off until further assessment. The SOLAR instruments are currently outgassing, and some calibrations of the SOLSPEC instrument lamps and some Command Schedules for SOL-ACES are performed before the science program is started.

SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellite): In progress.

Swab (Characterization of Microorganisms & Allergens in Spacecraft): In progress.

TRAC (Test of Reaction & Adaptation Capabilities): Planned.

ULTRASOUND: In progress.

WAICO #1 (Waving and Coiling of Arabidopsis Roots at Different g-levels): 'Thanks Leo for your great work in setting up this first BIOLAB experiment! WAICO is now running autonomously in the Incubator. We encountered a silent Caution yesterday late night during the activation of the experiment, triggered by slightly too high O2 concentration in the LSM (Life Support Module). We have now recovered the temperature, centrifuge, illumination and humidity controls; we expect no major science impacts so far. The nominal growth period is 14 days, and we will continue to monitor the plants on a daily basis.'

CEO (Crew Earth Observation): Through 2/26 the ground has received a total of 15,305 frames of ISS/CEO imagery for review and cataloging. 'After the break for STS-122 support, we are currently working through requested sessions for: South Tibesti Megafans; East Venezuela Land Use; Lake Nasser, Toshka Lakes, Egypt; Pilcomayo River Dynamics, Argentina; and the Ganges River Delta. We hope to provide feedback in the coming weeks. We have received only 137 new images since the recent crew change and look forward to more. Your recent, incredibly detailed view of Perth-Amboy, New Jersey will be published on NASA/GSFC's Earth Observatory Website this weekend.'

CEO photo targets uplinked for today were Lahore, Pakistan (weather was predicted to be clear for this nadir pass over the city of Lahore. Lahore is the second largest city in Pakistan, and is located on the banks of the River Ravi. Overlapping nadir mapping frames, taken along-track, were requested to capture a rural-urban-rural transect as ISS crossed the city from NW to SE), Florida Coastal Everglades, FL (this LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) site monitors the Everglades, Florida's "river of grass". Extensive human alteration of the surface hydrology of the region has produced numerous impacts on the Everglades' flora and fauna. ISS had a nadir pass along the southwestern coast of Florida; overlapping mapping frames of the coastal wetlands were requested), Central-Arizona Phoenix, AZ (ISS orbit track passed over the southwestern portion of the Phoenix metropolitan area - currently the focus of development in this important southwestern urban center. Study of the ecological changes that accompany urbanization in an arid climate is the focus of the Central Arizona-Phoenix LTER site. High resolution nadir frames acquired along track are useful for monitoring land use/land cover change resulting from urban development), and Madrean Sky Islands, N. America (the Madrean sky islands are enclaves of Madrean pine-oak woodlands, found at higher elevations in a complex of small mountain ranges in southern Arizona and New Mexico and northern Mexico. The sky islands are surrounded at lower elevations by the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts. Overlapping nadir mapping frames of the mountain summits and ridgelines, taken along track, were requested).

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